Footsie Dives as Fears Grow over US Rescue Plan; Scrawl Street: Placards Express New York Protesters' Views on US Economic Policy

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Byline: HUGO DUNCAN

SHARES in London plunged again today on growing fears over the US government's proposed $700 billion bank (?382 billion) rescue plan.

The FTSE 100 index tumbled 136.1 points to 5100.1, with banks and other financial stocks bearing the brunt of the sell-off. It followed a 75-point fall in London yesterday and carnage overnight on Wall Street, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 372.75 points to 11,015.69, or more than 3%.

Stock markets in Europe and Asia were also on the slide as Friday's euphoria over the proposed bailout of the US banking system evaporated. Lawmakers have expressed fears the scheme is unworkable, and Democrats and Republicans are now haggling over the details.

However, it was today thought the Bush administration was edging ever closer to a deal with Congress on the plan.

Matt Buckland of CMC Markets said: "There's clearly a lot of sentiment involved. We are seeing a step change in the financial landscape as we have come to know it, and as this is played out perhaps further volatility in inevitable." The Bank of England pumped another $40 billion into the money markets today in a bid to encourage lending between nervous banks but it did little to help sentiment. …