U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said Wednesday that "serious differences" remain with President Barack Obama in talks to avert the "fiscal cliff" of tax hikes and budget cuts, Reuters reported.

Boehner spoke with Obama on Tuesday and said that the president's proposal for $1.4 trillion in new tax revenues did not fulfill his promise for a balanced approach to fixing the deficit.

Obama and Boehner have each proposed cutting deficits by more than $4 trillion in the next 10 years as part of a deal to avert the cliff, but they differ on how to get there.

On Tuesday night, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. CEO Mike Duke told the Council of Foreign Relations that shoppers are paying attention to the fiscal cliff debates, and the issue could hurt holiday retail sales, Fortune reported.

According to Wal-Mart polling of its shoppers, 25 percent said that they knew what the term "fiscal cliff" meant before the election. That number rose to 75 percent after the election; 15 percent said the fiscal clifft would affect their holiday spending.

Another CEO, Jamie Dimon at JPMorgan Chase & Co., said at a Wednesday conference that the U.S. economy is poised to boom if lawmakers can reach a deal to avoid the cliff, CNNMoney.com reported.