President Bush, in an announcement from the White House's Rose Garden this morning, released the details a $250 billion plan by the federal government to purchase shares in the nation's leading banks, saying the plan was "not intended to take over the free market but to preserve it."
Nine major banks will participate, including all of the country's largest institutions. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson had to pessure some on the banks into joining the program. Paulson had targeted healthy institutions that did not necessarily need capital from the government to remove any stigma that might be associated with banks getting bailouts.
Paulson told reporters that "today's actions are what we must do to restore confidence in our financial system.
"We regret having to take these actions. Today's actions are not what we ever wanted to do — but today's actions are what we must do to restore confidence to our financial system."