WASHINGTON – The Treasury Department announced Sunday night that tax-exempt money market mutual funds will be included under its temporary $50 billion insurance program for money market funds that it unveiled Friday, providing urgently-sought relief to market participants.

The announcement, a reversal of the previous stance the department had taken, came after the Treasury received many panicked phone calls from market participants over the weekend, warning that if tax-free funds were not included in the program, investors would withdraw their money from the funds in record numbers when markets reopened.

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