The U.S. House of Representatives had passed the economic stimulus package. Now the measure goes to the Senate for a vote.
Stocks retreated in a yo-yo session as an earlier advance in the shares of energy and big-cap technology companies dissipated. But banks held gains as investors hoped for more clarity on the government plan to firm up the financial system, with Fed Chairman Ben Beranke meeting with President Obama today.
The 150-year prison sentence issued to swindler Bernard Madoff Monday will send a strong signal to other potential perpetrators of fraud and to the financial markets in general, the White House said in a statement Monday.