US stocks gain as Congress reaches stimulus plan dealFebruary 12th, 2009 - 9:51 am ICT by IANS
Washington, Feb 12 (DPA) Wall Street rose as the US Congress reached an agreement on an economic stimulus plan of tax cuts and spending designed to pull the country out of its worst recession in decades.
The leaders in the Senate and House of Representatives ironed out differences in separate versions of the stimulus bill and knocked the total price tag down to $789 billion. They are expected to vote on the measure later this week.
The chambers had earlier each passed separate versions of the legislation, with the Senate approving an $838-billion deal Tuesday and the House passing a $819-billion version last week.
In announcing the deal Wednesday, senators praised the ability to save billions off the cost of the programme while staying faithful to efforts to boost the economy and create jobs.
The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 50.65 points, or 0.6 percent, to 7,939.53. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index earned 6.58 points, or 0.8 percent, to 833.74. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index gained 5.77 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,530.50.
Stocks had tumbled Tuesday by more than four percent, the most since President Barack Obama’s inauguration last month, as investors were skeptical that a separate overhaul of the government’s financial rescue plan will be enough to stabilise the system.
The US dollar fell against the euro to 77.51 euro cents from 77.53 euro cents Tuesday. But the dollar rose against the Japanese currency to 90.44 yen from 90.34 yen.