There is ongoing optimism among financial journalists that the economy will continue to grow, according to Gorkana Group’s “2014 Survey of Financial Journalists”, a comprehensive analysis of the opinions of leading US journalists. The survey also shows that while traditional media still dominate as the most influential outlets, online sources are starting to break that stranglehold.

According to Jeni Chapman, managing director of Gorkana: “What is most striking is the entrance into the top 10 most influential outlets of not one but two online media sources, demonstrating that they have moved well beyond challenger brands into solid and credible go-to sources. In contrast to that is the rise of the press release, the death of which is constantly being predicted, as a go-to source of information for financial journalists. The lesson for brands dealing with the media remains the same: Tell a good story, provide the top spokespeople, and understand what the journalist is interested in before getting in touch.”

Key findings for 2014 study include:
• US Economy: 45 percent hold a positive outlook and 42 percent neutral
• Financial Sector: 36 percent hold a positive outlook with 49 percent maintaining a neutral view
• Financial Journalism Industry: 32 percent maintain a positive position and 42 percent neutral
• Most Influential Journalist: Andrew Ross Sorkin voted number one; Jon Hilsenrath number two, while New York Times journalists Gretchen Morgenson and Paul Krugman share third spot
• Most Influential Outlet: The Wall Street Journal retains the top position with Bloomberg News second and the New York Times third. Two online outlets, Yahoo! Finance and Business Insider, enter the top 10 for the first time.
• Most Reliable Sources: Newspapers and publications retain the top spot, personal interest remains in second position, and corporate news releases jump into third place
• Most Credible Sources: Academic/expert rises from second to first place, swapping places with company CEOs who move to second, while technical expert in a company takes third place
• Most Respected PR Professionals: Brandon Ashcraft of Barclays ties for first place with Tucker Hewes, founder of Hewes Communications.