OLD Media Moves

The pinnacle of financial journalism

September 17, 2009

Julia Ioffe of The New Republic writes that Financial Times chief economics correspondent Martin Wolf is at the top of the financial journalism world.

Ioffe writes, “Hired as an editorial writer by the FT in 1987, he is arguably the most widely trusted pundit of the current economic crisis. Consider the people who count themselves fans of his column. Larry Summers: ‘He is probably the most deeply thoughtful and professionally informed economic journalist in the world at this point.’ Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff: ‘He really is the premier financial and economics writer in the world.’ Mohamed El Erian, CEO of PIMCO, the worlds largest bond investor: ‘He is, by far, the most influential economic columnist out there. His columns are eagerly anticipated.’

“Knowing that Wolf is widely read and highly esteemed, major players in the economic world court his approval. The day after Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced details of the Public-Private Investment Program, he called his old friend Wolf, who he knew was working on his Wednesday column. Geithner wanted to explain — and defend — the initiative. Wolf listened politely and, the following day, slammed the program as the ‘vulture fund relief scheme.’

“‘You cannot measure influence, but you can feel influence,’ says University of Chicago economist Raghuram Rajan. ‘And I think he has it.’ What makes this influence so fascinating is that, more than two decades after he became a full-time journalist, Wolf’s columns resemble nothing so much as his frantic, dense, cutting letters to the editor. They are learned, baroque, and quite frequently terrifying.”

Read more here.

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