Extending a recent trend, the U.S. fiscal cliff topped the list of investor threats to the stock market for the tenth consecutive week in the VIX and More weekly fear poll. Fears associated with excessive central bank intervention were a distant second, while more general concerns about government and politicians finished third in the poll.
The gap between the fiscal cliff and the runner-up issue was 10.6% this week, the largest in six weeks and the second largest since the inception of the poll some ten weeks ago.
For the second week in a row, geographical differences among the respondents were relatively small, with only minor differences between U.S. and non-U.S. respondents. The regional myopia that had separated U.S. and non-U.S. respondents on the relative importance of the fiscal cliff vs. the European sovereign debt crisis for most of the last three months appears to have subsided over the last two weeks, in conjunction with the widespread lessening of fears over the future of the euro zone.
Once again, thanks to all who participated in this weekly poll.
Last but not least, Merry Christmas, happy holidays and best wishes for a joyful, healthy, happy and profitable 2013!