OLD Media Moves

Queen of the crisis

March 7, 2009

Sheelah Kolhatkar of Time magazine profiles Suze Orman, whose personal finance show on CNBC and personal finance books are in demand due to the current economic crisis.

Kolhatkar writes, “Over the top as she is, Orman’s ubiquitous presence has become a sort of unofficial economic barometer: the worse things get, the harder she is to avoid. Her style seems almost intentionally annoying: she screams on camera, her blue eyes practically bugging out of her head.

But she has long been saying what America needs to hear, crusading against credit-card debt and urging people to save money and pay down their mortgages. Since the onset of the recession, she has made some subtle adjustments to her image, positioning herself more as a populist crisis manager than as a promoter of the American Dream. That hasn’t shielded her from criticism for not foreseeing the deepest financial meltdown since the Great Depression, or at least for not making it the core of her message.

“But if some analysts question the soundness of Orman’s advice, especially given today’s extreme financial conditions, few of her fans do, in part because she sounds so convincing when she says she’s on their side. When asked whether she could have done more to warn people about the real estate, stock-market and credit bubbles of the past few years, Orman said, ‘I did everything I could.'”

Read more here.

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