Felix Salmon

Business Insider, over-aggregation, and the mad grab for traffic

By Ryan McCarthy

The news that Business Insider raised approximately $7 million should be great news for those who follow the world of web media. Henry Blodget’s got a flat-out growth story on his hands: his staff of 60 now attracts 12 million visitors a month, according to their internal stats.

More lessons from paying people to be less poor

By Barbara Kiviat

Back in 2007, New York City began paying members of some 2,400 poor families to do things like get dental check-ups, open savings accounts, hold down jobs, show up for school, and carry health insurance. Cash incentives were meant to get people with complicated, resource-constrained lives to invest in themselves and their children in ways that would ultimately break the inter-generational cycle of poverty.

Europe, here comes your pitch

By Mark Dow

As I write, financial leaders from around the world have assembled in Washington DC for a long weekend of hard thought. The initial signs are not encouraging. Many top European policymakers, especially in Germany, still appear to be in denial about the gravity of the situation and the need for a holistic solution. There seems to be too much attention paid to Greece and Italy, too much adherence to hidebound rules and compacts, too great a desire to punish the misbehavers and combat market forces.

There’s no reason why stocks are down today

There’s a lot of uncertainty in the global economy, and that’s the kind of thing which makes stocks volatile. This morning, we’re seeing that volatility express itself, with global stocks all falling and US stocks down about 2.5% from where they closed yesterday.

Adventures with online-banking videos

BankSimple came out with a preview of their service today and it’s very cool.

Counterparties

UBS CEO Oswald Gruebel has apparently been asked to leave — FT Alphaville

Here’s a first look at BankSimple, a startup that promises to change the way we deal with money — BankSimple Blog

A topological mapping of explanations and policy solutions to our weak economy

This was originally posted at Rortybomb

For the next few posts I need to allude to an ongoing battle of ideas about what is troubling our economy and what solutions are available. I figured it might be a good idea to try and create some sort of topological map of the various clustering of ideas and policies that constitute these arguments as well as the overlap among them. This is a preliminary version of this map: I’d really appreciate your input about what is missing and how to make this better.

The ETF loophole (almost) everyone missed

by Paul Amery

This post originally appeared at IndexUniverse.eu

For the webinar we ran last week on the subject of regulation, I put together a slide listing the ETF-related warnings that have been issued by an alphabet soup of international supervisory bodies since 2009.  In repeated public statements, regulators have reiterated their concerns over ETFs’ structure, their collateral and counterparty risks, possible contagion effects from ETFs to the broader financial market, short selling, leverage, and fallible liquidity.  Ironically, though, given what’s just happened at UBS, not one warning mentioned the issue of clearing and settlement as a potential concern.

Why mortgage servicing won’t get fixed

Back in November, Treasury’s Michael Barr set a clock ticking, with respect to mortgage-servicing reform.