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[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/money/galleries/2008/news/0809/gallery.week_that_broke_wall_street/images/1009_thursday.ap.jpg caption="Specialist Justin Bohan holds his head as stocks plunged in the final minutes of trading Thursday, Oct. 9th, sending the Dow Jones industrials down more than 7 percent, to their lowest level in five years. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)"]
Do you like roller coasters? The high-speed, ups and downs. The screams. The heart-pumping. My 12-year-old nephew sure does, but these days you don't need to hit a theme park for those thrills. Just watch what's happening on Wall Street. The Dow retreated today after yesterday's biggest one-day point gain ever of 936 points. Today, blue chips ended the day down 76 points.
The decline comes after President Bush and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson unveiled details on a plan to spend $250 billion on bank stocks.
"Time and again our nation has faced adversity and time and again we have overcome it and risen to new heights. This time will be no different," said Paulson in Washington. "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 in our financial system," he added.
Look over the plan here. Do you think this will help boost investor confidence?
While the Bush administration unveiled its plan, John McCain outlined his own economic vision if elected president. There are several proposals from the GOP presidential candidate, including cutting the captial gain tax and helping older investors dealing with shrinking retirement accounts. Tonight on 360, we're on the trail with all the details.
Plus, we're keeping McCain and Obama honest. Do either of them have an economic plan that America can afford? Hear what one economist thinks.
And, we'll unveil the fifth person on our 10 most wanted: Culprits of the Collapse.
Join us at 10pm ET on CNN.
The last presidential debate...and other stories on our radar:
PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE: The third presidential debate will be held at Hofstra University and moderated by Bob Schieffer of CBS News.
ON THE TRAIL: Both Sen. John McCain and Sen. Barack Obama will be in Hempstead, NY for the debate. Gov. Palin is in New Hampshire with rallies in Dover, Laconia, and Salem. Sen. Biden spends the day in Ohio with gatherings in Athens, Lancaster, and Newark.
SUPREME COURT ORAL ARGUMENTS: The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case concerning jury instructions.
BERNANKE ADDRESS: Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is scheduled to address the Economic Club of New York.
It's been one of the most exciting presidential races in decades... And after two years of campaigning, it will all culminate with America's vote on November 4th. Are you registered to vote in this election?
Laws and deadlines vary from state to state, and some deadlines have already passed... Check the deadlines here and go to The Forum on CNN.com, where you can find out how to register to vote in your state, if you still can!
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Michelle Obama campaigns Monday at a rally in Rochester, Minn.
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[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/US/10/14/iraq.puppy.ap/art.puppy.ap.jpg caption="Sgt. Gwen Beberg and another soldier rescued the puppy, Ratchet, from a burning pile of trash in May."]
WASHINGTON (AP) – More than 10,000 people have signed an online petition urging the Army to let an Iraqi puppy come home with a Minnesota soldier, who fears that "Ratchet" could be killed if left behind.
"I just want my puppy home," Sgt. Gwen Beberg of Minneapolis wrote to her mother in an e-mail Sunday from Iraq, soon after she was separated from the dog following a transfer. "I miss my dog horribly." Beberg, 28, is scheduled to return to the U.S. next month.
Ratchet's defenders are ratcheting up their efforts to save him. On Monday, the program coordinator for Operation Baghdad Pups, which is run by Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals International, left for a trip to the Middle East to try to get the puppy to the U.S.
And last week, Beberg's congressman, Democrat Keith Ellison, wrote to the Army urging it to review the case.
Ben S. Bernanke
Chairman, Federal Reserve
Wall Street Journal Op-Ed
The necessary policy tools are in place.
As Americans well know, the challenges we now face in the financial markets and in the economy are both extraordinarily complex and historic in scope. I firmly believe, however, that with the actions policy makers are announcing today, we will be able to meet those challenges.
Our strategy will continue to evolve and be refined, and we will adapt to new developments and the inevitable setbacks. But we will not stand down until we have achieved our goals of repairing and reforming our financial system, and thereby restoring prosperity to our economy.
Over the past year, the Federal Reserve has actively used all its powers and authority to try to help our economy through this difficult time. Central banks around the world have also consulted closely and cooperated in unprecedented ways to reduce strains in financial markets and to bolster our economies. We will continue to do so. However, clearly the time had come for a more comprehensive and broad-based solution.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/14/art.bernanke.jpg width=292 height=320]
Senior Managing Director & Chief Economist, Mesirow Financial
In a ground-breaking move, Chairman Bernanke appealed directly to Wall Street by preempting an official announcement (due out this morning), and explaining his intent to directly infuse banks with capital, in the op-ed pages of the Wall Street Journal.
Above him on the page was Senator Chuck Schumer's support of the Fed-Treasury plan, which is expected to include $250 billion in preferred share purchases in our largest bank and bank holding companies (Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs included).
What is so remarkable about this effort is the way in which it was communicated. The Fed and the Treasury have learned that back room deals, negotiated on an ad hoc basis, added more confusion than clarity about the state of the financial system, and ultimately undermined, instead of reinforced, investor confidence. The initial failure to accept the Paulson deal was especially costly in terms of the public's confidence in our financial leadership.
So, Ben adapted. He and his friends at the Treasury kept us abreast of the events unfolding, both at home and abroad, to more effectively unfreeze credit markets over the last week. Talks with bankers and their governments were confirmed before "official" agreements were announced. And then, Ben circumvented the speculative media and made his appeal directly to the public and investors in the pages of the Wall Street Journal.
It wasn't primarily the work of Hillary Clinton, though by her count she has made more than 50 public appearances for Barack Obama. Nor was it the work of Obama, who has kept Clinton and her advisers at arm's length. No, the one who put the Hillary Clinton voters in Obama's column was John McCain - with his choice of a running mate.
"Palin - God forbid! Where did they find her?" Evelyn Fruman exclaimed Monday before a Clinton speech at a Jewish community center here.
"God forbid!" Gail Silverberg chimed in. "Hockey moms and lipstick on a pig and six-packs? I don't want that stuff."
Nearby, Rina Jampolsky was wearing a "Hillary Sent Me" button next to a pin saying "Barack Obama" in Hebrew. "I thought I wouldn't vote at all when Hillary left the race," she said. "But as soon as McCain selected Sarah Palin, my decision was made."
Editor's note: Dana Milbank is a staff writer at The Washington Post
Editor's Note: The presidential election once again may hinge on what happens in key "battleground" states. CNN's electoral map shows seven states that are too close to call. CNN's John King has been talking with voters in those states to report what's beneath the poll numbers. Here's his report on what he heard from some black voters in Moussouri.
CNN's John King reports that the black vote could be crucial in deciding which Missouri swings.