The "fiscal cliff" deal reached by Congress on Jan. 1 had a positive impact on the economic health of the franchise industry, IFA reported. "The uptick in January is reflective of the pent-up demand for growth felt by many franchisors and franchisees who held back on investments in the second half of 2012 because of the uncertainty surrounding the 'fiscal cliff,'" IFA president and CEO Steve Caldeira said. If lawmakers enact pro-growth tax reform and spending cuts, the industry could exceed its expected 10,000 new establishments and 162,000 new jobs in 2013, Caldeira said.

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