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Stock futures fall as debt stalemate continues

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By Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock futures fell Wednesday as lawmakers remain at odds over how to avoid a debt default. A weak report on long-lasting manufactured goods also weighed on stocks.

House Speaker John Boehner had planned to hold a vote on his debt-limit plan on Wednesday. But that was postponed after conservative lawmakers scoffed at the proposal and congressional budget officials said it would have cut spending less than advertised. The White House had also threatened to veto Boehner's plan. A deal still appears a long way off.

The stalemate has put financial markets on edge. If an agreement is not reached by Aug. 2, the U.S. may not have enough cash to pay all its bills and could default. That would have a devastating effect, analysts say. The U.S. would likely lose its triple-A credit rating, causing interest rates to rise. Borrowing costs would go up for already strapped states and municipalities. Stocks could also plunge.

Ahead of the opening bell, Dow Jones industrial average futures fell 26 points, or 0.2 percent, to 12,406. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures fell 6, or 0.4 percent, to 1,320. Nasdaq 100 futures index fell 15, or 0.6 percent, to 2,409.


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