Economy through a lens: Distortions of policy coverage in UK national newspapers

James Bowden, Andrzej Kwiatkowski, Dooruj Rambaccussing (Lead / Corresponding author)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
89 Downloads (Pure)


This paper shows that communication of economic news varies across newspapers in the United Kingdom. We develop new time series of economic news tonality using a unique dataset of policy influenced articles published in major UK newspapers. We show that the volume and tonality of news respond to current economic conditions. For example, the nature of news changes around events of economic uncertainty such as the global financial crisis and the post-EU referendum periods. We also provide illustrative evidence that communication differs across newspaper formats. Tabloids, as opposed to quality newspapers, tend to express news more negatively, and mostly report policy-related news during periods of economic stress. The integral importance of these results is illustrated by news reaction curves showing a strong positive relationship mostly lasting three months between consumer sentiments and news.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)881-906
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Comparative Economics
Issue number4
Early online date22 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


  • Economic news
  • Economic policy
  • Economic sentiment
  • Media
  • Newspapers
  • Textual econometrics
  • Tonality
  • United Kingdom

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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