There’s been a gap in Slate’s business and economics coverage since the departure last month of Dan Gross as Moneybox columnist. But the online news and culture magazine has lured some new talent to fill it.
Slate has tapped veteran business journalist Bethany McLean, a Vanity Fair contributing editor and the co-author with Joe Nocera of a forthcoming book on the financial crisis, to write a yet-to-be-named column about Wall Street and finance, Business Insider has learned. Meanwhile, Annie Lowrey, most recently a reporter for The Washington Independent, will take over Moneybox, focusing on economics and economic policy, as a full-time staff writer.
Slate editor-in-chief David Plotz confirmed the hires in a brief phone interview.
“Dan was somebody who did everything, so now we’re dividing up the coverage,” said Plotz.
In July, Slate shuttered its two-year-old standalone business news website, The Big Money. But Slate chairman Jacob Weisberg stressed at the time that, “The decision to close TBM as a separate destination doesn’t signal a move away from business as a category or a subject. To the contrary, we expect Slate’s engagement with business to get much stronger as a result of folding in aspects of what the separate site has been doing.”
Plotz echoed those sentiments.
“We’re not Fortune or BusinessWeek or even a necessary stop for business and economics coverage, but we’re a place that traditionally thinks and writes really, really well about these issues,” he said, citing past columnists like Austan Goolsbee, Slate founding editor Michael Kinsley and Business Insider’s Henry Blodget.
It appears that McLean will continue to write for Vanity Fair, though she could not be reached to comment for this item. Her book with Nocera, “All the Devils Are Here,” hits stands Nov. 16 from Portfolio Hardcover. She will begin writing for Slate sometime in the next few weeks.
Lowrey, who was at The Washington Independent for seven months, begins her new job today.
“I joined The Washington Independent, never having worked for a web-only publication and never having done policy reporting at Internet speed,” she wrote in a farewell post on Monday. “It is with a heavy heart that I’m leaving TWI for Slate.”
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