BT's Michelle Quah wins SIAS top gong - Oct 05, 2007 (BT)

BackOct 05, 2007

The Straits Times / The Business Times News On SPH

BT's Michelle Quah wins SIAS top gong

She shares title of financial journalist of the year, given by the Securities Investors Association, with ST Money's Lorna Tan.

By Conrad Tan
Oct 05, 2007
The Business Times

(SINGAPORE) Business Times journalist Michelle Quah has jointly won top honours for financial news reporting with Lorna Tan of The Straits Times.

Getting it write: Michelle Quah (right, pictured with ST's Lorna Tan) says that finance journalists should hold themselves to the standards they demand of those they report on

Ms Quah, a 32-year-old senior correspondent at BT, was named financial journalist of the year by the Securities Investors Association of Singapore (SIAS) at its annual gala dinner at the Raffles City Convention Centre.

Ms Tan, a senior correspondent at The Straits Times, also received the award.

Two other journalists were also recognised for the quality of their reporting in the local financial media and their impact on the investment community here. Christie Loh, a correspondent at Today, won an award for best financial story of the year, while Fiona Chan from The Straits Times was named most promising journalist of the year.

SIAS chairman Tan Chok Kian said that small investors rely heavily on reports by journalists to make informed decisions on their investments. 'I hope this award will encourage financial journalists to write corporate stories that impact on the retail community.'

Ms Quah, a journalist of 10 years experience and a former accountant, said that Singapore had 'come very far' in the changes it has made to improve corporate governance standards, which has given it a leading position in the region 'in terms of good governance practices, disclosure and transparency'. For things to improve further, 'I think the key lies not in formulating more rules and regulations but in better educating the marketplace - companies, directors, regulators, shareholders - on good behaviour,' she said.

'I think Singapore could work harder to bring itself up to international standards in certain areas, such as better protection of minority rights, tighter executive and director remuneration practices, more transparent regulatory practices ... We could also do with greater participation by institutional and retail investors.'

She believes too that financial journalists should hold themselves to the standards they demand of those they write about. 'A good financial journalist must have integrity. It may sound like a given, but I've learnt that it isn't always the case. I believe it's important to treat people fairly and to report stories accurately.'