Robert Schmidt and Rebecca Christie
December 9, 2009

[efoods]The Obama administration extended the $700 billion financial-rescue program until October, arguing that the U.S. must hold on to the money in case of new financial shocks.

In a letter today to congressional leaders, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said the department doesn’t expect to deploy more than $550 billion of the funds. The Treasury may expand the Federal Reserve’s Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility, an effort to jumpstart securitization markets, and will continue to use the Troubled Asset Relief Program to help struggling homeowners and small companies, he said.

“As we wind down many of the government programs launched initially to address the crisis, it is imperative that we maintain this capacity to respond if financial conditions worsen and threaten our economy,” Geithner wrote.

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