Washington's increasingly heated battle over raising the US debt limit could all but wipe out the country's fragile recovery, economists warned on Friday.
The International Monetary Fund said on Friday that an "excessively rapid and ill-designed" deficit reduction plan had hampered the "tepid" recovery in the US economy.
Global markets continued their rally on Wednesday as Ben Bernanke, chairman of the US Federal Reserve, made clear he had no intention of cutting short his $85bn-a-month (£56bn) quantitative easing programme in the near future.
The Federal Reserve has explicitly criticised budget cuts imposed by Congress, blaming fiscal policy for holding back the US's economic recovery.
The US economy is still too weak for the Federal Reserve to pull back from its $85bn-a-month stimulus package, the central bank said on Wednesday.
Barack Obama warned on Saturday of a "ripple effect" through the US economy that would cost hundreds of thousands of jobs after he reluctantly signed an order to begin a huge $85bn (£56bn) programme of government cuts.
President Barack Obama has demanded that Senate leaders strike a fiscal cliff deal by Sunday to avert the looming US economic crisis, or face a vote based solely on his own measures.
President Barack Obama has been accused by a senior Republican of being eager to take the US over the fiscal cliff for political gain, as Washington edges closer to a year-end deadline with no deal in sight.
Barack Obama left Washington with his family for a Christmas break in Hawaii on Friday night, an acknowledgment that weeks of negotiation over the economy's looming crisis had ground to a halt.