Congress returns to Washington Monday to convene a lame-duck session with the struggling auto industry as its first priority. Democrats want to use part of the $700 billion Wall Street bailout for emergency loans to help the Big Three carmakers.

General Motors announced the closure of four truck and SUV plants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico Tuesday and said it may discontinue its Hummer brand as soaring fuel prices push a broad shift in the U.S. to smaller vehicles.

Apr 30

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In a smaller move than in past months, the Federal Reserve cut a key interest rate by a quarter percentage point Wednesday in what could be the last in a line of reductions aimed at boosting an economy hit hard…

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