Investors turned skeptical about the US government's latest bank bailout plan on Tuesday, with the Dow Jones industrial average falling more than 200 points. Financial stocks led the market lower, reflecting Wall Street's growing concerns about the government's ability to restore the health of the banking industry.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced a plan that the government says could mobilize well over $1 trillion in public and private support to get the frozen credit markets functioning again. It includes a government-private sector partnership to help remove banks' soured assets from their books.
The new plan would also expand an effort to unclog credit markets that provide loans to consumers and businesses; funding for this effort would increase to $100 billion from $20 billion. The administration also announced that the program would be expanded beyond consumer and small business loans to provide aid to the troubled commercial real estate sector.
But the broad outlines of the plan left the market uneasy. Investors seemed to be questioning whether this plan, which followed previous efforts in the final months of 2008, would be the one that works.
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