July 15, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Bank failure still a big story for Southern California dailies

We thought that we would check to see how the Southern California dailies were doing with the run on the bank that was the high or low point of yesterday’s financial story. The story — with photos of the crowds wanting to get their money out of the failed IndyMac Bank — is there for all to see and read.

The Los Angeles Times has a five-column picture of the queuing crowds and two Page One stories — “Banks hit by fallout from the crisis at IndyMac” and “Fed imposes new rules on lenders.” The competing Daily News reports “Run on IndyMac continues,” with what we used to call a button above that proclaiming, “We want our cash, worried account-holders say.” The Spanish-language La Opinion, also in Los Angeles, has a picture and heads teasing the inside coverage.

The Press-Telegram in Long Beach also has a picture and the headline, “Long lines and few answers.” The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin in Ontario reports “Bank troubles” above its photo and “IndyMac customers rush to get money” below it. The San Diego Union-Tribune says that “Assurances don’t ease banking fears.”

The Daily Breeze in Torrance says it all with a top-of-the-page banner reporting “Depositors throng IndyMac,” the Ventura County Star in Ventura goes the same way with “Hundreds Flock to IndyMacs,” and the Santa Barbara News Press has a banner about “Angry customers pulling out of IndyMac,” dropping down to two stories. The Press-Enterprise in Riverside reports that “Banking jitters spread,” while The Orange County Register in Santa Ana plays it differently, offering “4 must-read stories you’ll find inside today’s paper”; the first one is “Bank clients fear for funds.”

We also thought it worth taking a look at how the St. Louis Post-Dispatch is handling the follow-up to the $52 billion takeover of the local Anheuser-Busch company by an international brewing concern. Much of Page One is devoted to follow-up stories, such as “Making Bud a global brand holds key” and “Brewery workers fear that leaner could be meaner.” We’ll drink to some of that.

Gene Mater is a Freedom Forum media consultant.

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