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Financial Bailout Bill Passed and Signed Into Law

The U.S. House of Representatives voted today to pass the $700 billion financial bailout legislation that has see-sawed through Congress this week, and President Bush put his signature on the bill shortly thereafter.

Today's House vote (263 to 171) approving the historic financial rescue packages comes two days after the Senate approved the measure by a 74-25 vote. The revised bailout plan -- different from the version the House rejected on Monday -- contains "sweeteners" like over $100 billion in tax cuts and increased limits on federal bank deposit insurance. (See a Draft of the Bailout Bill, from the New York Times)

Bloomberg.com reports that "The bill's defeat on Sept. 29 caused a 778-point drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, prompting dozens of lawmakers to switch their vote on the legislation, the government's largest intervention in the markets since Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal." According to Reuters, "Markets pivoted on passage of the bailout, with stocks drifting from highs and the dollar slipping as the focus began to shift from the immediate response to the financial crisis to signs of a gathering recession."

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