Blue chips soar 150 points to end five-day losing streak


Stocks climbed for the first time since the middle of last week, as details of President Barack Obama's proposed homeowner relief package and reports that China will announce a stimulus plan to jolt its economy gave investors something to celebrate.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged nearly 150 points, or 2.2 percent, to close at 6,876. Blue chips rose to within 25 points of 7,000 but fell after the Federal Reserve's Beige Book revealed the recession deepened in the first two months of the year. Energy and mining stocks had a good day thanks to rising commodity prices. But General Electric (GE) briefly fell below $6 on concerns over the health of its finance unit before rebounding to finish down 4.6 percent at $6.69.