TARP spending could shift to housing

Obama, through Bush, asks for second $350 billion

The focus of the Treasury Department’s $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) could soon shift from recapitalizing banks to helping troubled homeowners avoid foreclosure and stimulating demand for housing.

The Bush administration has agreed to make a formal determination that the second $350 billion in TARP money will be needed, so that President-elect Barack Obama could theoretically have the money at his disposal soon after he takes office Jan. 20.