Business

With Fiscal Cliff Looming, Hiring Likely To Stay Soft

President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney each claim to be the candidate who'll do more to create jobs. But businesses are likely to keep dragging their feet on hiring, no matter who wins tomorrow's race.

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For many employers, the reluctance to hire boils down to uncertainty. Patrick Jankowski is vice president of research for the Greater Houston Partnership.

“If you don’t know what you’re tax rate’s going to be, if you don’t know what you’re healthcare costs are going to be, if you don’t know what the additional regulation’s going to be, you’re reluctant to add to your uncertainty by bringing on workers.”

But that uncertainty won’t vanish after tomorrow’s election. John Challenger is CEO of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

“The big issue is not just the election, but even more importantly, it’s the fiscal cliff, when the lame duck Congress, under either president-elect, is going to have to act. And if they don’t, there will be severe issues for the economy in 2013.”

Congress agreed to steep tax hikes and spending cuts last year as an incentive to pass a more balanced deficit reduction package. Having failed to do so, the so-called fiscal cliff kicks in after the first of the year.

 

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Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew heads Houston Public Media's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments across Greater Houston. Before taking up his current post, Andrew spent five years as Houston Public Media's business reporter, covering the oil...

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