Top Stories about Money
Last week, we teamed up with Consumers Union and students from Howard Rheingold's journalism class at Stanford University to focus on Money and personal finance. We searched for quality news and opinion on the fallout from the financial crisis and how to cope with the economic recession. In our final tally, we reviewed 61 stories together, with topics ranging from financial planning to credit card debt and retirement strategies.
Our top rated story, 'Fannie Mae's last stand' from Vanity Fair, covered the collapse of the major mortgage company at the heart of last fall's economic downturn and the internal and external forces that led to its failure. Stanford University student Joseph John called it a "nuanced look at the phenomenal growth and fall of Fannie Mae," adding, "It brings alive the characters who controlled Fannie Mae and the opposing forces. The article covers Fannie's mistakes and misdeeds, as well as those who wanted to bring doen the mortgage giant even before the subprime crisis took hold."
Our partners at Consumers Union posted two excellent stories from their monthly magazine, Consumer Reports, both of which were rated highly ('A rescue plan for the rest of us' and 'Rebuilding your retirement nest egg'). A departure from hard news coverage of the recession, these pieces were written with the aim of giving a factual overview on the economic crisis and offering direct advice to consumers on how to weather it.
Prominent among our top rated opinion pieces were perspectives on President Barack Obama's economic stimulus package. Mikkel Fishman, of the Moderate Voice, took an ambivalent view of the plan, calling Obama's approach "disingenuous," while the New Yorker and the New York Times were generally supportive ('A smarter stimulus', 'A stimulus with merit, but some misses, too').
Here's a list of our top rated stories on Money.
Fannie Mae's last stand
Credit card companies go to war against losses
New York Times
Deal of the decade? Lehman's Fuld gave $13.75 mil estate to wife for $100
Market losses tighten screws on colleges
The fight against Bill Creep
Wall Street Journal
From our partners
A stimulus with merit, but some misses, too
New York Times
A smarter stimulus
Calling the hardship department
Pilot & Today
Why the stimulus plan isn't
The Moderate Voice
Bill Gates on the future of aid
This week: Education with Ashoka
This week, our featured topic is Education, in partnership with Ashoka, the global network of social entrepreneurs. Join our News Hunt for great journalism on educational topics ranging from early childhood to lifelong learning, global literacy and digital learning. All week long, we will collectively search for quality news and opinion on these topics, led by our hosts Kristin Gorski and Dale Penn. To get started, review (or submit) some of the stories on our Education subject page.
Coming Next: Foreign Policy and Obama's First 100 Days
Next week, our topic will be Foreign Policy, with a focus on how the Obama Administration is addressing major world issues like the wars in Iraqs and Afghanistan, as well as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This will be the first in our three month investigation of Obama's First 100 Days in office. From February to April, we'll host our largest News Hunt ever, to monitor the news coverage of the Obama's first 100 days in office. During that time, we encourage you to keep submitting and reviewing great journalism on the Obama Administration, starting with its foreign policy. Keep your eyes peeled from now until the end of April -- not only will this period hold some key policy changes, but it will also give us an indication of what the rest of the new president's term could look like. We will provide more detail this month about this Obama News Hunt, and announce the results during the first week in May. For updates, or to review current stories on this topic, visit our Obama Administration topic page.
-- By Derek Hawkins, with Fabrice Florin and Kaizar Campwala