U.S. President-elect Barack Obama was named Person of the Year by Time magazine, which said he suspended our politics, shattered decades of conventional wisdom and overcame centuries of the social pecking order.
The US Federal Reserve has slashed its key interest rate from 1% to a range of between zero and 0.25% as it battles the country's recession. In its statement, the Federal Reserve warned that the outlook for economic activity has weakened further.
Some of the world's biggest banks have revealed they are victims of an alleged fraud which has lost 50 billion US dollars. Bernard Madoff, who was arrested on Thursday, has been charged with fraud in what is being described as one of the biggest-ever such cases.
A firm that counted itself a client of a broker accused of a 50 billion US dollars Wall Street con has criticised US regulators for what it says are systemic failures. Bramdean Alternatives said the charges against Bernard Madoff raised fundamental questions about the American financial regulatory system.
The outgoing George Bush administration said it may be willing to give emergency aid to the ailing US car industry, keeping open the prospects for a bailout the day after Congress failed to approve a deal.
The former chairman of the Nasdaq stock market has been arrested and charged with securities fraud, in what may be one of the biggest fraud cases yet. Bernard Madoff ran a hedge fund which ran up 50 billion US dollars of fraudulent losses and which he called one big lie, prosecutors allege.
The White House and leading Congressional Democrats reached on Wednesday a broad agreement on a 14 billion US dollars rescue package for the Big Three US auto manufacturers but Republicans are still holding out.
The US trade deficit unexpectedly grew in October, despite falling oil prices, according to Commerce Department data released this week. The trade deficit rose to 57.2bn, which was an increase of 1.1% from September's figure.
United States shares echoed gains in stock markets worldwide on hopes that new stimulus plans in the US and other countries will revive global economic growth. The benchmark Dow Jones index on Monday was up 298 points or 3.5% in afternoon trading in New York, shrugging off Friday's grim unemployment numbers.
The US economy lost 533,000 jobs in November, the biggest monthly cut since 1974, the US Labour Department said on Friday. In a dramatic indication of the worsening economic situation, the US jobless rate rose to a 15-year high of 6.7% from 6.5% in October.