Bush May Tap USD700 Billion Bank Fund To Help Car Makers

President Bush said he is prepared to tap the $700 billion bank-rescue fund to prevent an auto-industry collapse.

"If there were finance companies that were too big to fail, there are certainly automobile companies that are," said one analyst.

Oil climbed more than $3 from Friday’s intra-day lows as the Bush administration’s apparent willingness to give short-term help to General Motors and Chrysler eased speculation that the companies will collapse.

"Under normal economic conditions we would prefer that markets determine the ultimate fate of private firms," Dana Perino, President George W. Bush's spokeswoman.

"However, given the current weakened state of the U.S. economy, we will consider other options if necessary - including use of the TARP program - to prevent a collapse of troubled automakers."

"Because Congress failed to act, we will stand ready to prevent an imminent failure until Congress reconvenes and acts to address the long-term viability of the industry," said a Treasury spokeswoman, Brookly McLaughlin.