NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 11/15/12 -- U.S. stocks markets have slumped to 3-month slows after President Obama's re-election as investor focus has switched to the upcoming "fiscal cliff." Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 Index have slumped over 2.5 percent in the past week. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Technology Sector and provides equity research on Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Dell Inc. (NASDAQ: DELL).
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The "fiscal cliff" is a combination of government spending cuts and tax increases set to take effect at the beginning of 2013 unless lawmakers reach a compromise on a new budget deal. The Treasury Department has recently reported that the October deficit, which is the first month of the new fiscal year, grew 22 percent to $120 billion.
"The stock market is going to be captive to Washington for the time being," said Michael Mullaney, chief investment officer at Fiduciary Trust, in an interview. "The market would like to go up a little bit from here after it has been beaten down, but it's going to be hard pressed to sustain a rallying state until we have resolution on the fiscal cliff."
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Shares of Microsoft have fallen over 8 percent in the past week. The company's Chief Executive Steve Ballmer recently stated in an interview that sales of Microsoft's Surface tablet were "modest." Another factor for the company's drop this week has been the unexpected departure of veteran Steven Sinofsky, who was in the head of the company's Windows unit.
Shares of Dell have fallen over 35 percent year-to-date as rapidly growing popularity for mobile devices have caused personal computer sales to fall sharply in 2012. According to research firm IHS iSuppli worldwide computer sales are set to decline for the first time since 2001. "Optimism has vanished and turned to doubt, and the industry is now training its sights on 2013 to deliver the hoped-for rebound," said Craig Stice, senior principal analyst for computer systems at IHS.
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