Media Moves

Bloomberg reporters receive bonuses for market moving stories

December 11, 2013

Posted by Chris Roush

Julia LaRoche of Business Insider examines the practice at Bloomberg News of paying reporters part of their bonus based on how many market-moving stories they produce.

LaRoche writes, “This practice is not widespread in the financial news industry, and journalists we spoke to from other outlets were not aware that it is used at Bloomberg. We also canvassed traders, bankers and public relations professionals. None of them had heard this before, either.

“Most of the people we spoke to, especially traders, were startled to hear about this practice, worrying that it might create an incentive for Bloomberg reporters to ‘push’ or stretch stories with the specific aim of moving markets. Traders react instantly to headlines and news stories, and the decisions they make often make or lose significant amounts of money.

“We asked Bloomberg about the practice. A company spokesperson acknowledged it.

“‘It isn’t news unless it’s true. At Bloomberg News, the most important news is actionable. That means we strive to be first to report surprises in markets that change behaviour and we put a premium on reporting that reveals the biggest changes in relative value across all assets.'”

Read more here.

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