Negotiations between Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff made significant progress and the two sides are now closer to a deal than they were Sunday, according to sources close to the process, CNN reported.
President Barack Obama said during a televised address early this afternoon that a deal was "in sight."
Thus far, the potential agreement includes allowing top tax rates to return to Clinton-era levels, an extension of unemployment insurance and an agreement to increase the estate tax rate, though there would likely be a compromise to keep it from jumping to pre-Bush levels, said a source familiar with the negotiations.
The emerging deal would set the top tax bracket at $450,000 for households and $400,000 for individuals.
According to Bloomberg, rates on estate taxes would rise to 40 percent on amounts above $5 million; extensions of business tax breaks would continue through the end of 2013; there would be a permanent fix to the alternative minimum tax threshold; and the Medicare payment rate for doctors would be extended through 2013.
Meanwhile, Bloomberg reported in a ticker that Sen. Max Baucus of Montana said negotiators were "very close" to a budget deal.