The U.S. government is working to bolster troubled banks at a time when officials worry the recession may get worse and hit financial companies even harder.

The U.S. Treasury department and other financial regulators say they will ease the repayment terms of hundreds of billions of dollars worth of aid they have given to banks and make it easier for banks to use government help in the future.

This week, regulators will check banks to see if they have the reserves needed to "provide the credit necessary to restore economic growth."

Those banks that can not raise the needed capital from private sources could get additional government help.

After Monday's announcement, the share prices of two major banks, Citigroup and the Bank of America, rose.  Those firms had seen shares plunge last week after investors grew worried that the banks could not cope with rising credit losses.  

Some information for this report was provided by AP