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.

Darling calls for tougher global regulation

The Government set out part of the agenda for April's global economic summit of the G20 nations yesterday, stressing the need for "tougher global financial regulation".

Hit & Run: Northern star

What sort of icon does Cheryl want to be? Her fame has, after all, reached the point at which her first name will suffice. Her mentor, Simon Cowell, has apparently offered her £1.5m – a 100 per cent pay rise – to return to the next series of The X Factor; she is supposedly the subject of a recent shoot for Vogue, and now the artist Lee Jones has immortalised her in his painting "Angel".

Leading article: The world must hope that America gets it right

We are all dependent on a recovery in the world's biggest economy

The first glimpse of Obamanomics

As the President-elect's new team gets to grips with the financial crisis, US economic policy looks set to be guided by pragmatism rather than political philosophy

Obama picks 'best US minds' to save economy

Enemy of defeated Democrat candidate is chosen to fill crucial position of commerce secretary

Market Report: Woolworths spirals lower on 0p target price

Bearish broker comments depressed Woolworths, the troubled retail group, which missed out on yesterday's market rally. The stock fell to 1.34p, down 6.29 per cent or 0.09p, after Panmure Gordon set a 0p target price, arguing that "given deteriorating high-street conditions and Woolworths' obvious distress, there is now little or no chance of the equity retaining any value".

Summers' 'sexism' costs him top Treasury job

If a scintilla of disappointment was detectable in Lawrence Summers today as President-elect Barack Obama presented him as the next chief of the National Economic Council, everyone knew why. His big mouth was the reason he didn’t get that other job that used to be his, Treasury Secretary.

Obama chooses Christina Romer as chief economic adviser

President-elect Barack Obama has chosen Christina Romer, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, as the head of the White House Council of Economic Advisers.

US government reveals Citigroup rescue deal

The US government unveiled a bold plan to rescue troubled Citigroup, including taking a $20 billion stake in the firm as well as guaranteeing hundreds of billions of dollars in risky assets.

US keen to restore confidence in Citigroup

Government officials in the US worked through the weekend on plans to shore up confidence in the future of Citigroup, the financial giant whose shares cratered last week.

Economic battle plan set out

Barack Obama will formally unveil his economic team in Chicago today, as he sets to work on fleshing out ambitious proposals to lift the US out of its rapidly-escalating financial crisis. Timothy Geithner has been tapped as Treasury Secretary, while Larry Summers, a treasury secretary under president Bill Clinton, will head the National Economic Council.

Hillary plays hardball

The first sign of friction in the Obama camp as Mrs Clinton demands - and gets - a purge of her critics before accepting Secretary of State role

Obama's green start

Hope of early action on climate change as US president-elect prepares two bills to cut pollution and kick-start a clean energy revolution

Rupert Cornwell: Coolly, calmly, Obama is putting together a remarkable team

Out of America: Even senior Republicans admit that – on paper, at least – the president-elect is assembling a very impressive administration

Citigroup launches ‘Don’t panic’ ad blitz as shares dive

Citigroup, the embattled financial giant, is taking out advertisements in major US newspapers today in an attempt to shore up customer confidence after a downward spiral in its share price raised doubts about its future.

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Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricket
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
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a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
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The Tesco Hudl2: An exceptional Android tablet that's powerful, well-built and outstanding value
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Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
Sport
Two christmas trees ,Moonbeam (2L), Moonchester (2R) and Santa Claus outside the Etihad Stadium
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Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas