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Stocks tumble at the close Wall Street ends a volatile session lower as investors consider the Senate hearing on the proposed bank bailout. EMAIL | PRINT | SHARE | RSS * Yahoo! Buzz * DIGG * FACEBOOK * DEL.ICIO.US * REDDIT * STUMBLE UPON * MYSPACE * MIXX IT Subscribe to Markets google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes feed:// Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader See all RSS FEEDS (close) By Alexandra Twin, senior writer Last Updated: September 23, 2008: 4:08 PM ET Quick Vote What should Congress do with the $700 billion proposal to take pressure off the credit markets? * Pass the legislation quickly * Pass it, but add stimulus and foreclosure relief * Reject it or View results The end of the American eravideo The end of the American era More Videos The powerful Paulsonvideo The powerful Paulson More Videos Issue #1 * Weakest holiday sales since '02 seen * Medicare premiums to stay flat in 2009 * McCain: I'd fire SEC Chair Chris Cox * Wall Street cheers banks' move * Reserve's money fund 'breaks the buck' Issue #1: America's Money - Everyday on CNN Special Report ELECTION 2008 * Dear 44: Your economic to-do list * Your Money: A voter's guide * Hey, big spender * Buying friends in D.C. * Decoding Obama's tax claim * The only way to fix Social Security NEW YORK ( -- Stocks slumped Tuesday, at the end of a volatile session in which investors considered the Senate hearing on the proposed $700 billion bank bailout plan, lower oil prices and a modest rally in tech shares. The selloff in oil, gold and other safe-haven commodities caused investors to bail out of the underlying stocks. And General Motors continued to slump on worries about its cash position. The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) lost over 160 points, or 1.5%, according to early tallies. The Nasdaq composite (COMP) fell 1% and the Standard & Poor's 500 (SPX) index fell 1.6%. In the wake of the worst financial crisis in years, the Bush administration has asked Congress for approval to spend up to $700 billion to buy bad mortgage debt and help mitigate the financial crisis. The Senate Banking Committee met Tuesday, as regulators attempt to hammer out the details of the plan, with an announcement expected by the end of the week. The House Financial Services Committee holds testimony Wednesday. (Full story) Stocks rose in the morning as the hearing got underway, slipped in the afternoon as the debate heated up, rallied again, and then sold off near the close. Stocks tanked Monday, with the Dow falling 373 points as investors worried about the details of the government's bailout plan and a jump in the price of oil - which saw its biggest one-day dollar gain ever. It was the fourth consecutive session in which the Dow ended the session with a change of at least 350 points in either direction, demonstrating the extreme volatility of markets. Senate hearing: Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said immediate action is necessary, while some members of the Senate Banking Committee questioned the size and scope of the current plan and whether more provisions need to be added to protect taxpayers, among other changes. "Congress needs to get out of the way and worry about the extras later," said Dean Barber, president at Barber Financial Group. "They need to let the financial sector know they are going to secure the system now." Paulson said it is imperative that Congress approve the bailout this week. He said that failure to pass the bailout would mean a continued series of bank failures and frozen credit markets, which threaten the health of the economy. And Bernanke said that failing to bail out the financial industry could mean a bigger economic slowdown, a weaker labor market and more housing market weakness. The proposal would let the Treasury buy up bruised assets held by troubled financial firms at a discount, hold them and then sell them later for profit. With these bad assets off their balance sheets, the hope is that banks would be willing to lend to each other again, loosening up the credit markets and removing one of the weights on the struggling economy. However, there are questions about whether the plan would be able to accomplish this, as well as what it will mean for taxpayers and for the inflation outlook. The uncertainty about the details of the plan are going to keep stocks in a narrow trading range for the next few sessions, said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Avalon Partners. But the longer-term outlook for equities will improve as long as some form of the proposal is passed that serves to restore confidence in the credit markets. "The bottom line is that the market is looking for closure on this, whether it's $700 billion or $1 trillion," Cardillo said. Financial crisis: The proposal is seen as the most sweeping economic intervention by the government since the Great Depression. It followed an extraordinary week on Wall Street that began with Lehman Brothers (LEH, Fortune 500) filing the biggest bankruptcy in history. Also last week: Merrill Lynch (MER, Fortune 500) was bought by Bank of America (BAC, Fortune 500) in a $50 billion stock deal; AIG (AIG, Fortune 500) narrowly avoided bankruptcy after the Fed bailed it out with an $85 billion bridge loan; and speculation swirled about the fates of Morgan Stanley (MS, Fortune 500), Goldman Sachs (GS, Fortune 500) and Washington Mutual (WM, Fortune 500). Since then, federal regulators have said they were converting Morgan and Goldman into bank holding companies, a move that lets them buy smaller regional banks and have more direct access to Fed funding. It also means that the banks are now under the Fed's supervision. Separately, a Japanese financial services firm is buying a stake in Morgan. (Full story.) Company news: General Motors (GM, Fortune 500) fell 6% as investors continued to worry about its ability to raise capital amid the sluggish auto market. Late Monday, Fitch cut GM's debt rating even deeper into junk status, citing the company's faltering liquidity cash woes. Former Dow component AIG (AIG, Fortune 500) gained 8% in active trade on optimism that the company will survive in the aftermath of the federal bailout - following comments from its new chief executive in a televised report late Monday. The shares had been higher before the company said in the afternoon that it was suspending its dividends on its common stock. But the rest of the financial sector was mixed, with Citigroup (C, Fortune 500) down 2% and JP Morgan Chase (JPM, Fortune 500) up 2%. General Electric (GE, Fortune 500) slipped 4% after Merrill Lynch downgraded it to "neutral" from "buy," according to, on bets that its commercial finance and money units will see weaker earnings next year. Oil and gold: Oil prices dipped Tuesday, following the biggest one-day dollar gain in the price of oil ever. The November contract, which became the active month Tuesday, pulled back $2.76 to settle at $106.61 a barrel. On Monday, U.S. light crude oil for October delivery briefly spiked more than $25 a barrel to hit $130 before pulling back to settle at $120.92, a gain of $16.37. Oil prices had been plummeting since peaking at $147.27 a barrel on July 11, as investors bet that sluggish global growth will diminish oil demand. But prices had shot more than 30% higher as the financial crisis intensified and investors sought hard assets to put their money into. COMEX gold for December delivery fell $17.80 to $891.20 an ounce after rallying $44.30 in the previous session. Like oil, gold prices had also rallied during the biggest periods of unrest over the last few weeks. The retreat in oil and gold prices dragged on a variety of oil services and metals stocks, including Marathon Oil (MRO, Fortune 500), Halliburton (HAL, Fortune 500) and Alcoa (AA, Fortune 500). Bonds: Treasury prices gained, lowering the yield on the benchmark 10-year note to 3.82% from 3.83% late Monday. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions. Last week, Treasury prices rallied and yields tumbled as nervous stock market investors looked for safer areas to park their cash. The three-month Treasury bill, considered to be the safest short-term asset, fell to a 68-year low around 0%, demonstrating the utter lack of interest in risk-taking amid the financial market crisis. The three-month bill fell to 0.81% in Wednesday afternoon trading from 0.93% in the morning, suggesting that investor appetite for risk remains low. Other markets: In currency trading, the dollar gained against the euro and slipped versus the yen. Gas prices fell for the sixth day in a row, according to a survey of credit card activity. (Full story). In global trade, European and Asian markets both ended lower. To top of page First Published: September 23, 2008: 10:18 AM ET The week that crushed Wall Street How we got there: It's housing, stupid Election 2008: The Candidates and your money Ultimate retiring guide: 383 questions answered Issue #1: America's Money 50 years of profit swings

Atom smasher will have to wait until spring * Story Highlights * Researchers say repairs, winter will delay particle collider until spring * Spokesman: It will take too long to finish repairs before November shutdown * Collider will have to be warmed up from near absolute zero for repairs, then rechilled * Large Hadron Collider designed to collide protons to reveal more about universe * Next Article in Technology Decrease font Decrease font Enlarge font Enlarge font GENEVA, Switzerland (AP) -- The European nuclear research organization says repairs and the onset of winter will delay the startup of the world's largest particle collider until spring. The collider's ALICE experiment will look at how the universe formed by analyzing particle collisions. The collider's ALICE experiment will look at how the universe formed by analyzing particle collisions. Spokesman James Gillies of the European Organization for Nuclear Research says it will take too long to finish announced repairs before the November shutdown. Gillies said Tuesday that it will take several weeks to warm up the damaged area from near absolute zero before experts can go in and make repairs. Then the machine will have to be rechilled over another month. He told The Associated Press that the decision was made Tuesday that this will take until the winter shutdown starting in mid-November. Gillies says the resumption of the Large Hadron Collider should proceed quickly next spring.

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