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Obama hails US budget deal

Barack Obama has hailed a deal to avoid a "fiscal cliff" of stark tax hikes and spending cuts. The US House of Representatives backed the bill by 257 votes to 167.

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Treasury suspends investments as US hits debt ceiling

The US Treasury has that said it will hit a legal limit on borrowing but will launching new measures to keep the nation from defaulting on its debt.

In a separate letter, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told congressional leaders that the government would suspend some investments in pension and health benefit funds for federal workers to free up borrowing authority.

The suspension of the investments is part of a series of measures announced last week to keep the country from defaulting on its debt.

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