- The Fed injects an addition trillion dollars into the economy.
WASHINGTON Ã¢â‚¬â€ With the country sinking deeper into recession, the Federal Reserve launched a bold $1.2 trillion effort Wednesday to lower rates on mortgages and other consumer debt, spur spending and revive the economy. To do so, the Fed will spend up to $300 billion to buy long-term government bonds and an additional $750 billion in mortgage-backed securities guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and his colleagues wrapped a two-day meeting by leaving a key short-term bank lending rate at a record low of between zero and 0.25 percent. Economists predict the Fed will hold the rate in that zone for the rest of this year and for most _ if not all _ of next year.
- Marijuana policy undergoes a long overdue shift.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Eric Holder signaled a change on medical marijuana policy Wednesday, saying federal agents will target marijuana distributors only when they violate both federal and state law. That would be a departure from the Bush administration, which targeted medical marijuana dispensaries in California even if they complied with that state's law.
- Are newspapers next on the bailout list?
WASHINGTON, March 18 (Reuters) - U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said on Wednesday preserving a healthy newspaper industry was important and he was open to adjusting antitrust policy if it could help. "I'd like to think 20, 30, 40 years from now people will still be reading the newspaper," Holder told reporters. He was responding to a call by House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, urging the Justice Department to give newspapers more leeway to merge or combine operations. "The policy is to go after those people who violate both federal and state law," Holder said in a question-and-answer session with reporters at the Justice Department.
- And in another first, Barack Obama will become the first sitting US President to appear on a late night talk show.