Media Moves

The financial press during times of economic crisis

March 19, 2008

Patrick Smith of The Press Gazette in London writes Wednesday about the value of financial journalism during times of economic uncertainty.

Chris GilesSmith wrote, “Chris Giles is the paper’s economics editor. In an office overlooking the River Thames in the paper’s London headquarters, he says the most important task for the FT is to simply tell readers the truth without speculating too much. And he admits that even the FT’s experts don’t know what will happen. The key for Giles in financial journalism is, to paraphrase Socrates, know what you don’t know.

“‘The important thing is to tell readers as far and as best you can what really is going on. You have to make a very, very clear distinction between things you know, like banks are in trouble, and conjecture.

“‘You have to be very careful in making that distinction very clear. It’s a lot easier for the FT than it is for many other news organisations because we have far more people with far more experience in the various sectors, particularly the deep bits of the financial system, which frankly people just don’t look at very often.’

“Giles admits the FT was not ‘particularly up on the exact causes’ of the credit crunch, after it emerged that the collapse in the US housing market was affecting big European banks in August last year.”

Read more here.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry daily or weekly.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry.