Nikhil Kumar

Nikhil Kumar is The Independent's New York correspondent. He was formerly assistant editor on the foreign desk and has also done a variety of jobs on the city desk, where he wrote about markets, commodities and other business and economics topics.

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Fed looks to taper stimulus this year

Janet Yellen named to chair Fed as latest minutes reveal central bank concerns

President Obama nominates current vice chair Janet Yellen as new head of Federal Reserve

If she replaces Ben Bernanke, Ms Yellen would be the first woman to lead the American central bank

Alcatel-Lucent to axe 10,000 to cut costs

Alcatel-Lucent, the telecoms giant formed by the 2006 merger of France's Alcatel and Lucent Technologies of the US, plans to shed 10,000 jobs worldwide as it attempts to cut costs in the face of heavy losses.

3.5 billion of the new notes have been produced, worth $350bn

US unveils new $100 bill to foil foreign counterfeiters

The US Federal Reserve has begun circulating new $100 notes, introducing new anti-counterfeiting features – including a distinctive splash of colour – that have been more than a decade in the making.

BP disaster probe hears that 4.2m barrels of oil were spilled

The question of how much oil spewed out of BP’s Macondo well during the Gulf of Mexico spill in 2010 was centre stage at the hearing into the disaster yesterday, with a US government lawyer claiming that at least 4.2m barrels escaped.

US crisis shakes the world’s stock markets

Global markets took another pounding on Monday as international pressure grew on the US to resolve its political deadlock and avoid an unthinkable default by the world’s biggest economy.

Prosecutors claim Madoff enlisted the help of Joann Crupi to make up trading records

Did Bernie Madoff act alone in Ponzi scheme fraud? Trial of five former employees begins

When Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme first came to light, Wall Street was shocked by the scope of the fraud. At $65bn, it rendered even the most seasoned traders – people who are used to dealing with millions everyday –speechless. But there was more to come, for when the disgraced financier subsequently claimed that he had acted alone, everybody was left wondering how one man could have perpetrated such an immense fraud over so many years.

Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, here with actress Kate Hudson

Markets all of a Twitter as online giant set for $1.1bn float on stock market

Beloved of teens, big business and world leaders, the broadcast platform will make its founders billions –but it’s yet to turn a profit

Twitter lifts lid on its finances at it aims for $1bn float

While the company continues to make a loss, its revenues almost tripled last year

Q&A: Resolving the US shutdown

Resolving the shutdown is important, for the longer it drags on, the greater the risk to the US economy, which remains weak. A drawn-out squabble over a stopgap budget would hit consumer spending, for example, as the furloughed federal workers tighten their belts. But in the short term, attention is turning to the debt ceiling because the federal government will hit its Congressionally mandated borrowing limit no later than 17 October.

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Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital