George Cyriax, who has died at the age of 81, was a journalist and economist who made an outstanding contribution to the Financial Times in the early 1960s. Described by David Kynaston, the FT's historian, as an exciting, exuberant figure, he was one of several brilliant writers, including Harold Wincott, who set the paper's intellectual tone and agenda during those years.
Educated at Wellington and Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, George worked for three years on The Economist before joining the FT in 1960. In that year he published, together with another FT journalist, Robert Oakeshott, a well-received book on modern trade unionism, The Bargainers.
On the FT he started as a reporter and was later appointed economics correspondent. This was a time of growing concern about the sluggish performance of the UK economy - with the FT, influenced by Cyriax, strongly in favour of expansion and modernisation as a means of achieving a higher rate of growth.
He wrote trenchant articles on a wide range of topics, not just economics. But he also had an entrepreneurial urge that the FT was not able to satisfy. In 1966 he left the paper to become a financial and economic consultant, working with Professor AJ Merrett, known for his work on the finance and analysis of capital projects. Merrett Cyriax Associates produced a series of reports on such subjects as investment in North Sea oil and the dynamics of small business.
Andrew Alexander, a journalist on the Daily Mail for 42 years, died on July 7, aged 80. Andrew worked for the Mail for 42 years as parliamentary sketch writer, columnist and City Editor. In the latter role for 16 years he was widely admired as a shrewd observer and brilliant analyst. Among his many awards, he was the Wincott Financial Journalist of the Year in 1990.
His politics were essentially those of a 19th century liberal. He supported free trade, low inflation, and, most strongly of all, individual freedom. David Hume's philosophy, and that of John Stuart Mill, appealed to him. Mill's "On Liberty" was for him a crucial text in political discourse. He opposed those, of left and right, who promoted a large state sector. He went directly from school to work, but became knowledgeable in history, politics, and economics. He is remembered by friends as a generous host who liked vigorous discussion and who would occasionally surprise them by singing Schubert songs, well, to his own accompaniment on the piano.