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TheStreet Open House

5 Stocks at Risk of Falling off the Fiscal Cliff

Analysts see Raytheon's sales shrinking 1% in 2012 and again in 2013, to $24.3 billion. Yet that may just be the start of even bigger declines. Note that the Defense Department has nearly doubled in size since 2001, and a 10% to 20% reduction in size over the coming decade is a real possibility, fiscal cliff or not.

Budget hawks in the Republican Party, coupled with national security doves in the Democratic Party, may increasingly look to form an unusual alliance in a bid to finally address our nation's pernicious budget deficits, and the likes of Raytheon and General Dynamics may be hard-pressed to fight that trend.

DeVry

DeVry (DV) provides a wide range of academic programs, from nursing to accounting to technical degrees. Like many other for-profit schools, DeVry has come under increasing scrutiny in Congress over rising student loan defaults. That's not a banking problem, it's a government problem: 80% of all student loans for DeVry's students are backed up the U.S. government, and a hefty chunk of funding for these loans would be cut from the budget if the fiscal cliff comes to pass. Even if legislators agree to a short-term fix to avoid the cliff, student loan funding looks to be a long-term sacrificial lamb as the government starts to pare back in size.

We may already be seeing the long-term challenges faced by DeVry and others. Enrollment in its various programs this summer is roughly 15% below year-ago levels. And though analysts are currently modeling for a 5% drop in fiscal (June) 2013 revenues to around $1.97 billion, they expect DeVry's revenues to rebound slightly in fiscal 2014.

Fiscal cliff or not, that may be hard to pull off as future government outlays for student loans become more meager.

To see these stocks in action, visit the 5 Stocks at Risk of Falling off the Fiscal Cliff portfolio.

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