United States

Felix Salmon

Aug 22 2013

Column - Data crashes: inevitable and mostly harmless

When you look up the price of a stock on the Nasdaq stock exchange, you're not really looking up the price at which it's trading on that exchange. All of the Nasdaq stocks trade on dozens of exchanges, all of which have the right to trade in those stocks. That right is known in the market as unlisted trading privileges, or UTP. The job of the Nasdaq is to serve as the securities information processor, or SIP, for all those different exchanges: the exchanges report to the Nasdaq all of the information they have on bids and offers and trades, and then the Nasdaq aggregates all that information and presents it in one place. Most importantly, it shows the most recent price at which any given stock traded, on any exchange. That's the price you're looking at.

Aug 19 2013

Content economics, part 3: costs

When I wrote last week about Jeff Bezos and his journalists, I said that "the Boston Globe was sold for essentially a negative sum, once pension obligations are taken into account, while the Washington Post was sold for the price of a nice Cézanne." It turns out that I was comparing apples with oranges: the Washington Post, just as much as the Boston Globe, was sold for less than the value of its pension obligations. Bezos might have paid $250 million for the paper, but he was also given $333 million to help him meet its pension obligations.

Jul 17 2013

The silly trial of Fabrice Tourre

There's a huge amount of legal firepower on display in lower Manhattan right now, all centered on a University of Chicago grad student named Fabrice Tourre.

May 20 2013

Why Yahoo-Tumblr makes sense

Amidst all the positivity coming out of Yahoo and Tumblr, any self-respecting pundit is going to want to pour cold water on the whole deal. Especially since billion-dollar mergers almost never work out very well. But here's the weird thing: the more I look at this tie-up, the more it makes sense to me.

Apr 25 2013

Column: The tragedy of long term unemployment

Paul Krugman and Megan McArdle both point to this chart today:

Apr 25 2013

Column: Apple's new pitch to investors

Today's earnings report marks the point at which Apple is officially no longer a high-growth tech stock, valued on its monster potential. Instead, it has become a cash cow, valued on its ability to pump hundreds of billions of dollars into its shareholders' pockets.

Apr 25 2013

Column: The invidious "down payment requirement" meme

I feared this would happen. Peter Eavis has a column today about what his headline calls "Down Payment Rules". Here's his lede:

Mar 25 2013



Mar 23 2013



Feb 21 2013



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