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Stocks dip on budget doubts

Dec. 25, 2012 @ 12:00 AM

NEW YORK -- Stocks fell in light trading Monday during a shortened holiday trading session with lawmakers running out of time to reach a budget deal that would prevent the U.S. from going over the so-called fiscal cliff.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 51 points to 13,140. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gave up 4 points to 1,426. The Nasdaq composite slipped 9 points to 3,012.

In more than a dozen interviews with The Associated Press, conservative activists said they would rather see the country fall off the cliff than agree to any tax increases for any Americans, no matter how wealthy.

Stocks fell sharply Friday, with the Dow logging its biggest drop in more than a month, after House Republicans called off a vote on tax rates. That left federal budget talks in disarray just days before sweeping tax increases and government spending cuts are scheduled to take effect.

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