Andrew Ross Sorkin: What I Read

Andrew Ross Sorkin, author of Too Big to Fail, on how he filters financial news. 

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How do people deal with the torrent of information pouring down on us all? What sources can't they live without? We regularly reach out to prominent figures in media, entertainment, politics, the arts and the literary world, to hear their answers. This is drawn from an email exchange with Andrew Ross Sorkin, editor-at-large of The New York Times' DealBook, author of Too Big to Fail, and co-host of CNBC's Squawk Box.

I usually fire-up my laptop sometime in the 4 am hour to see what’s landed in my inbox overnight and comb through the news ahead of Squawk Box. I have an RSS feed I started years ago to help sort through news to aggregate the best bits for the DealBook site and our early morning email. So I race through that list – mostly skimming since there are now over 100 sites that I follow. I also look through emails from people on the DealBook team and a great summary of the news from the day prior that CNBC sends out internally. Most of my deeper news consumption happens on my iPad on the way to CNBC. (Don’t worry, I’m not driving.)

I first hit The New York Times front page, business section and op-eds (I circle back to the other sections later); The Wall Street Journal’s front page, Marketplace section, Money & Investing Section and op-eds, Financial Times columnists and Lex, New York Post, Drudge Report, Huffington Post (I skim the homepage), CNBC’s middle column on the homepage and I check to see what happened on The Daily Show and Colbert Report from the night before. I’m not a real sports guy, but I check just so I know what people are talking about. And, of course, I go to DealBook!

At 5:30am, I flip between World Wide Exchange on CNBC to get a sense of the markets and Way Too Early on MSNBC with my friend Willie Geist, which somehow manages to pack virtually every bit of news you’d ever need to know into less than 30 minutes.

After Squawk Box (from 6am to 9am EST), usually on my way to The New York Times, I do a check of The New York Times' Economix, The Wall Street Journal's Marketbeat and Deal Journal blogs, FT’s Alphaville, CNBC, Bloomberg, Romenesko, TVNewser, DealBreaker, BreakingViews, The Washington Post's WonkBook, The Drudge Report and, yes, The Atlantic. I’m also a big fan of Politico’s Morning Money by Ben White (he’s a friend and a former colleague) and Playbook by my pal Mike Allen. I read those emails religiously.

On Twitter, I have two accounts. One is very public @andrewrsorkin. The other, which I don’t really want to publicize, I use as a news reader to keep up with the news. I keep them separate because I follow a lot of people on the public one and I find if I need quick uncluttered view of what folks in the world of finance and the economy are saying, my private account makes it a lot easier to scan what’s going on. If I could only follow one person on Twitter it would be Heidi Moore. She’s a financial journalist at NPR’s Marketplace. (She did some writing for DealBook a while back.) She’s a tweeting machine and always finds the juiciest morsels.

If I have a spare second, I usually catch up on the many magazines I’m behind on or watch the latest movies on demand that I usually missed at the theater. I love magazines. My top three: Graydon Carter’s Vanity Fair, Adam Moss’ New York magazine and David Remnick’s New Yorker. I also read Fortune and Bloomberg Businessweek, which has had a huge transformation under Josh Tryangel. I enjoy Esquire and GQ. And, yes, Men’s Health, though despite reading it for years, I’m not in any better shape. That’s probably because I read Us Weekly any time I’m at the gym.
In my free time, I also read a number of productivity blogs. I read Lifehacker, Stepcase’s Lifehack, The Energy Project, Tim Ferriss’ blog and a couple of others. My wife always tells me it is unproductive to read productivity blogs. But I think I’ve actually learned a lot about automating certain parts of my life as a result of the sites.
On TV at night, I DVR lots of programs – I use it more like a magazine rack flipping through shows than actually watching them in full. Charlie Rose, Meet the Press, 60 Minutes are musts for me. I also DVR NBC’s Nightly News and The Chris Matthews Show on Sunday. I often DVR the other morning shows, like Morning Joe and American Morning, to see how they covered the news while I’m on Squawk Box. I was a huge Entourage fan on HBO and often watch Bill Maher’s Real Time on-demand.
And before I go to bed, I check my email on my Blackberry. I use it as my alarm clock and I set my iPhone as a backup.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.