Magazines like the Economist (Full Guide)

We have previously explored prominent financial news outlets such as the Wall Street JournalThe Financial Times, and Bloomberg and compared them. While those publications are all daily and the online versions are practically real-time, there is a place for more timeless and thoughtful financial journalism.

I have had an online subscription to the esteemed Economist magazine for many years. It all started in my university years when I wanted to be updated about financial news and economics in a very thoughtful and detailed way.

These days, I just skim-read it for anything I might have missed or any article titles that catch my eye. What are other magazines like the Economist out there to consider? We explore this in this article.

magazines like the economist
Impressionist Oil Painting “Magazines Like The Economist” (George)

What type of magazine is The Economist?

The Economist is a British weekly newspaper focusing on current domestic and foreign affairs, international business, politics, technology, and culture.

The newspaper is fully in the hands of The Economist Group, with offices around the globe. We tried to find out from the paper itself which unfortunately does not make these figures public but according to Wikipedia it is estimated that the Economist’s global print circulation was over 909,476; combined with its digital presence, it runs to over 1.6 million. This is for 2019.

According to the Economist’s association documents “no individual or company can own or control more than 50% of its total share capital”. Its ordinary shares are employee-held as well as owned by Exor, which itself is owned by the world renowned Agnelli family. Pearson plc held a 50% shareholding up until 2015 via The Financial Times Limited before it sold its shares to Exor.

Is The Economist magazine worth it?

As in all things, the question of whether something is worth it depends on one’s perspective and requirements.

Currently, in its digital version, the Economist will cost you $ 10 for your first month and then renew to $ 19.90 per month thereafter. 

The annual subscription will be $ 199. If you want a physical copy at hand, the combined digital and physical print will be $ 15 for your first month and then $ 24.90 thereafter. 

These are currently discounted prices just for the first month. As for other magazines or subscriptions, it is worth checking in from time to time and seeing what deals are available.

Purchasing a copy at your local newsstand or store will usually cost around $ 5, so only if you are reading very infrequently. I’ll be honest, I purchased a few off the shelve over the years but only as mementos of a particular time.

I purchased copies, together with the FT and the WSJ after 9-11, after the global financial crisis, and after Covid hit us in 2020. I like having like a collector’s item. 

With the subscription comes instant access to the entire archive, which is very useful if you are looking for specific articles.

This is especially helpful if you are a student or researcher studying a subject.

For the price, especially in comparison to daily papers such as the FT or the WSJ, which both cost roughly $40 per month, the Economist looks like a better value, although it is only published weekly.

It depends whether you feel the urgency, either personally or professionally, to be updated about everything regarding the pulse of finance and economics or whether a weekly cadence is just pleasing.

It is a personal choice, and I can tell you that as a finance professional, I was reading both. I would think that if you are curious but not unwilling to be plugged into real-time financial news, the Economist fits your bill best. 

What are similar magazines to the Economist?

Some similar business magazines to the Economist include BusinessWeekInvestor ChronicleForbes, and Moneyweek. These magazines all cover topics and news stories from the business world, finance, and economics and are similar to the Economist, published weekly, apart from Forbes which is published 8 times a year.

Fair to say, they are all on the mandatory reading list of business schools. Let’s look at those publications individually and see how they compare. 


Forbes is a popular American business magazine, covering finance, investing and relevant industry and marketing topics. It is particularly well known for its famous and eye-catching lists and rankings, including the Forbes 400, which features the richest Americans, “America’s Wealthiest Celebrities”, the Forbes list of the World’s Most Powerful People, and The World’s Billionaires of course. Not sure I will be featuring on any of them anytime soon.

The magazine is owned by Integrated Whale Media Investments and the Forbes family. The company has its headquarters in Jersey City, New Jersey. 

Forbes is published 8 times per year and costs $6.99 on a monthly subscription, $49.99 annually, or $139.99 on a bi-annual basis.

Like the Economist, it will give an unsubscribed reader a glimpse into available articles but will not let you read it thoroughly unless you are subscribed. However, Forbes lets you fully read some of the “breaking news” articles, which we very much appreciate. 


BusinessWeek was founded in 1929. It is now owned by Bloomberg L.P. and is published weekly. The American magazine covers the business world and economics news and provides analysis and opinion pieces on current world affairs. BusinessWeek comes with the Bloomberg business news subscription,, which currently stands at $35 per month. 

Some of the content of BusinessWeek is free for unsubscribed, which can be helpful. On top of the articles, there is also a digitized TV format with valuable summaries of the critical topics in the upcoming or past publications.

The interesting parts are also streamed through BloombergTV, mostly on weekends. 


MoneyWeek is a British weekly investment magazine covering economic and financial market news. Currently, you can have the first 6 issues for free, which then turns into $34.99 for the subsequent 13 issues (quarterly). This is for the physical issue only.

If you are only interested in the digital copy, you will again have a free trial for the first 6 weeks before it turns into a quarterly cycle for $32.99. Combining digital and physical copies will cost you $39.99 after the first free 6 issues/weeks. 

Like the above publications, the visual site offers you plenty of topics. The focus is, as the name would suggests, more on one’s personal money and investments and, therefore, slightly more tilted for the professional investor amongst us.

Like the Economist and many other digital outlets, MoneyWeek also has a podcast that is freely available on the platform of your choice. We particularly liked the option to subscribe to their weekly roundup email, free of charge. 

Investors Chronicle

The Investors Chronicle is a well-known weekly publication on the British Isles. It is generally for private and professional investors and is published by the prestigious FT Group. The magazine publishes articles, similar to its competitors, mostly events surrounding global markets and selected sectors and business news. It was established in 1860, and it is widely considered to be a “highly influential magazine”. Currently, the publication can be ordered as a print and digital edition combo for £4 for the first 4 issues. Thereafter the cost moves to a quarterly schedule of £50.25

Our immediate impression of the website is that it is less modern when compared to its peers we have reviewed above. The home site also doesn’t give you a sneak peek at any current articles and themes.

The UK-centric focus of their articles and focus will therefore deter many international or globally focussed subscribers.

In addition to the above publications, I would like to mention a few as they are featured in my personal file. Harvard business review (HBR) was and is one of those magazines I keep on file as it features timeless articles about management and business.

Foreign Affairs has always been a go-to source for a good overview of current geopolitics and international affairs for the more politically minded reader. 

What is regarded as the most prestigious magazine in the world?

here is certainly no definitive answer to this question as it depends on each person’s definition of “prestigious.” Some people might consider magazines like Time or Newsweek the most prestigious, while others might consider more niche publications like The New Yorker or Harper’s to be more prestigious. 

Purely looking at numbers and taking estimated circulated figures as the guiding post, the Audience for Audited Media (AAM) summarizes its estimates for the monthly audience as follows: 


Magazine Brand Total Brand Audience
AARP The Magazine48,756,000
Sports Illustrated44,096,000
Good Housekeeping40,183,000
Taste of Home32,214,000
Us Weekly31,690,000
Better Homes and Gardens31,599,000
National Geographic25,515,000
Source: AAM

What is the best news source for economics?

Oof, that’s a very tough question, and I guess you would get quite a few different answers if you were to ask around. It’s a simple rule of tastepreference, and habit.

So I can give you a sample of good news sources, depending on your focus and the cadence, and the focal content you are probably most interested in. 

If you want to receive daily updates about the world of finance and economics, I would definitely go for either the Wall Street Journal or Financial Times.

I prefer the Financial Times, but that’s because I have built a habit of reading it, and I like the pinkish color. As for more in-depth analysis and coverage, I think any above publications will cover the ground well.

Again, purely because I have been reading the Economist for many years, my habitual self has set this as a preference. As in all things, checking out other sources for news might take adjustment but could be worth it. 


The Economist is a respected weekly news magazine that covers international business, politics, technology, and culture from a classically liberal perspective. It is owned by The Economist Group and has a global print circulation of over 909,000.

The magazine’s digital version costs $19.90 per month or $199 per year. A few alternatives we explored have similarities and are equally well regarded.

Forbes is a well-known business magazine that covers a variety of relevant financial topics. It is published 8 times per year and costs $6.99 per month or $49.99 per year.

The American magazine BusinessWeek, part of Bloomberg, covers business and economics news and provides analysis and opinion pieces on current foreign affairs. BusinessWeek currently comes with the Bloomberg news subscription, which currently stands at $35 per month.

MoneyWeek is a British weekly investment magazine. The digital version of the magazine costs $32.99 per quarter or $39.99 per quarter for the digital and physical combo.

The Investors Chronicle is a UK-based weekly magazine for private investors established in 1860. The digital and physical combo costs £50.25 per quarter.

There is no definitive answer to the question of which is the most prestigious magazine in the world. It depends on each person’s definition of “prestigious.” All of the above are mandatory readings in top business schools. Pick one, you won’t be disappointed.

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