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Meena Thiruvengadam


A reporter’s journey from the biz desk to the classroom

By on Oct 05, 2012

When I took my first job out of college at the San Antonio Express-News, I figured I’d go back to grad school in a few years. The time passed and it didn’t happen. A couple of jobs and a few more years later, I finally traded my employee badge for a school ID. At the […]

Local angles in the big business of payday lending

Local angles in the big business of payday lending

Wherever you live and report, there’s a good chance a payday lending battle is brewing in your backyard. An estimated 12 million Americans spend $7.4 billion a year on payday lending services, according to the latest report from the Pew Center on the States. That breaks down to 5.5 percent of adults across the country. […]


Three quick and easy paths to business infographics

Just because you may not have access to a full-fledged graphics department, doesn’t mean you have to be left out of the rise of the online infographic and all the extra page views that come along with it. Several websites have emerged in recent months that make it easier than ever for business journalists to […]

Can't miss data for travel-minded business reporters

Can’t miss data for travel-minded business reporters

I love travel-related business stories — reading them and writing them. I just wish I would have started searching for local business stories in national transportation statistics earlier. The latest data on domestic airfares from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics offers a great opportunity for business reporters to find local consumer stories. Nationally, airfares rose 10 […]

student loans

The student-loan debate: Tracking borrowers left out of low interest rates

One class of borrowers may never benefit from today’s near record low interest rates: students. Interest rates on federal student loans are scheduled to rise to a minimum 6.8 percent on funds borrowed after June 30 from the now minimum 3.4 percent for undergraduates. Christian Science Monitor estimates the rate hikes could add more than […]


Inside Pinterest: Business angles worth exploring

Pinterest is worth paying attention to even for business reporters outside of the tech beat, but scarce specifics can make localizing the hot social media trend a challenge. Over the past year, Pinterest has grown from a relatively unknown Palo Alto startup into one of the world’s top social media networks. More than 10 million […]

celebrity house

Celebrity home sales: Localizing real estate secrets of the rich and famous

When San Antonio basketball legend David Robinson decided to move last summer, he didn’t list his house with the Multiple Listing Service as most sellers do. Instead, the Admiral opted for a more private sale. But he couldn’t keep it a secret. “The Admiral has left 1 Admirals Way,” the San Antonio Express-News reported in […]

Federal Reserve

The Federal Reserve: A wealth of data for business reporters

The Federal Reserve managed to work its way into Valentine’s Day hearts across the country this year. It started with fewer than 140 characters. “You’re my long-run target; my nominal anchor,” @justinwolfers, a University of Pennsylvania economist tweeted a few days early. Within hours, #FedValentines became a trending topic on Twitter. “My love is elastic, […]

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke

Low rates help, hurt as economy recovers

The Federal Reserve last week told the world it’s in a long-term relationship with ultra-low interest rates. In the process it laid the groundwork for a lot of good stories. The Fed: “The committee decided today to keep the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent …  low rates of […]