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The MNI flag is flying at half-mast following the passing of John Carter last Friday at the age of 66, following a short illness.
John Carter was a founding father of MNI Market News, spearheading its robust and fiercely objective approach to financial journalism from its inception in 1984. In his 34 years with the company, Carter, a globetrotter, built teams of dedicated MNI journalists starting in the U.S., moving on to Europe and then on to Asia. A journalist's journalist, he inspired strong bonds through a combination of hard work, a deep interest in the world of global economics and politics, and an endearing empathy that was the hallmark of his leadership and did much to characterise the development of MNI Market News.
Carter was born in 1955 and was raised in Rochester, New York, spending his summers at Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire, his spiritual home. After graduating with a BA in Mathematics and History from Hamilton College in 1977 – inculcating a multidisciplinary approach that would enable him to straddle the twin requirements of numbers and words behind effective macroeconomics reporting – he moved to Washington DC where he worked initially as an aide to a U.S. congressman. He went on to drive a taxi in the nation's capital and soon ran a fleet before switching to journalism in 1978.
He was working at a weekly Washington-based financial newsletter called International Moneyline when he met Cass Rhymes and Bob Jones. Jones ran a financial research and analysis firm called Money Market Services (MMS) which pioneered U.S. bond market coverage via Telerate long before the arrival of Bloomberg and was interested in starting a complementary real-time financial newswire. Appointed Washington Bureau Chief, Carter played a pivotal role in recruiting talented and committed staff for Market News Service (MNS), the financial news service that would become Market News International (MNI), establishing the template for cultivating high-level sources at major central banks and other macroeconomic policymaking agencies around the world.
Carter would not only lead the expansion of MNI in Europe from his Frankfurt base in the 1990s but extended this mission to the Asia region from his Beijing base a decade later, completing the company's global, 24-hours footprint with journalists ranging from Sydney in the east to Chicago in the west.
A convivial companion, he was in his element when discussing geostrategic political and economic developments, whether in the office or socially, a passion rivalled only by his abiding love for baseball and the Boston Red Sox. Always generous with his time and willing to impart his rich experience of journalism and of the world, he was a natural teacher and effortless communicator whose career in financial journalism leaves a lasting legacy. He went on to become a senior editor for the political economy desk at the South China Morning Post in 2018, his team ethic immediately apparent to his colleagues in Hong Kong, and he continued to contribute to MNI as a consultant into his final days.
"I have been blessed to work with so many talented people at MNI over the years, but John was special even among such rarified company," said Mike Connor, CEO of MNI for much of the time Carter was at the company. "He was a serious, driven and disciplined journalist, but he spent much of his time mentoring and encouraging his team. He was demanding and uplifting in a unique way. He was also a great partner and friend."
Kevin Woodfield, Head of Policy / Connect at MNI who was hired by Carter in Washington DC in 1986, said: "John had this unique combination of being big-hearted and determined, someone you wanted to work for because he gave so much."
John Carter passed away on September 10 surrounded by his family at home in the Washington DC area.