News Jack Lew’s previous squiggle of a signature, above, and the new one, below

When US President Barack Obama nominated Jack Lew as the new Secretary of the US Treasury in January, the media had one overwhelming concern about the appointment: Lew’s illegible signature, which resembles the doodle of an absent-minded child, would now appear on every US banknote.

Governor of the Bank of England Sir Mervyn King says Barclays 'was in state of denial' about regulators' concerns

Sir Mervyn King said that Barclays’ board had been “deeply reluctant” to face up to concerns of the Financial Services Agency.

US bank bosses set for tough Libor questions

This week's earnings reports to put American managers in the dock

Leading article: Tensions that expose a gaping US-China divide

The most humane outcome would be for Beijing to give up Mr Chen quietly

France's Nicolas Sarkozy and Germany's Angela Merkel are trying to stand united

Merkel and Sarkozy close to agreement on major step towards fiscal unity for eurozone

So begin five days of meetings to try to salvage the continent's economies

Business Diary: Fixture clash is narrowly avoided

Full marks to David Cameron and Sir Mervyn King who avoided what might have been an embarrassing clash yesterday. The Prime Minister was originally set to make his latest statement on the riots at 10.30am, just as the Governor of the Bank of England was cutting his forecasts for economic growth. That might have looked as if the Government was trying to bury the bad news and the PM's office sensibly put his briefing back by half an hour.

Senate passes bill to prevent US default

The US avoided a feared and catastrophic default on the American debt, as lawmakers on today passed a measure that ties an agreement to raise the government's capacity to borrow to steep cuts in government spending.

Deadlock in talks to bring US economy back from the brink

The stakes are still rising in a game of political chicken that now threatens the immediate future of the global economy, as President Barack Obama continues attempts to negotiate a deal to raise the US government's debt limit.

Obama pledges tough choices on economy

President Barack Obama insisted yesterday he was prepared to make "tough choices" for a sweeping deficit-reduction deal to avert a US default, despite being warned by Democrats not to make too many concessions.

'No deal' on ending US debt impasse

President Barack Obama insisted he was prepared to make "tough choices" for a sweeping deficit-reduction deal to avert a US default, despite being warned by Democrats not to make too many concessions.

Geithner may quit Treasury this year for sake of family

Timothy Geithner, the US Treasury Secretary, may leave office later this year, it was reported yesterday.

Christine Lagarde set to become new IMF boss

French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde is poised to become the next leader of the scandal-rocked International Monetary Fund, with a major endorsement from the Obama administration.

David Prosser: And the solution to our economic woes is... there is no solution

Outlook: When more than half the economy depends on two drivers, it's difficult to see how there can be growth if those two drivers are weakening

Adrian Hamilton: This is no way to treat an accused man

International Studies

$14.294 trillion in the red, so US Treasury must stop borrowing

After months of hand-wringing, the US Government has reached its debt limit, forcing lawmakers to embark on a series of emergency measures to prevent public finances from going into immediate default.

Business Diary: Miller puts the past behind him

Alan Miller is a widely respected fund manager in the City, but is probably best known beyond the Square Mile for his exceptionally messy divorce from his wife Melissa – she got £5m in a judgment that he appealed all the way to the House of Lords before losing. It's good to see the episode hasn't put Miller off women. Interviewed in the latest issue of Spear's magazine, Miller reveals he has only two personal speed dial numbers on his phone: "The two most important women in my life – my [new] wife and my mum."

News
A cleaner prepares the red carpet for the opening night during the 59th International Cannes Film Festival May 17, 2006 in Cannes, France.
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Loaded weapon: drugs have surprise side effects for Scarlett Johansson in Luc Besson’s ‘Lucy’
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Jeremy Clarkson has rejected criticisms of his language, according to BBC director of television Danny Cohen
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Flocking round: Beyoncé, Madame Tussauds' latest waxwork, looking fierce in the park
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
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Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
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Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape