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Yahoo lines up new financial columnists

Nine exclusive columns slated to run periodically point to the Net company's growing interest in offering original content.

A new posse of columnists has begun dispensing insight on Yahoo's finance site in the Net company's latest original-content venture.

Exclusive columns from nine authors, economists and finance experts are slated to appear on the Yahoo Finance site on a biweekly or monthly basis, according to the company. Debut text from each contributor appeared Friday.

Among the participants are Hollywood persona Ben Stein--also a lawyer and economist--whose column every other Monday will give tips for the "ordinary" investor; business journalist Daniel Pink, who plans to home in on financial, consumer and workplace trends in a monthly column; and bestselling author David Bach, who will offer financial advice every other Tuesday under the title "The Automatic Millionaire."

Personal money-management tips will come from biweekly columns penned by Laura Rowle and regular Oprah Magazine contributor Suze Orman, whose columns have appeared on Yahoo since early 2004. Other writers will cover topics ranging from retirement tips for baby boomers to the impact of economic news on everyday life.

The move marks another effort by Yahoo to expand its media offerings beyond republished content. In January, it formed a media unit designed to boost its status as a Net entertainment destination.

The company also recently announced plans to bring on Kevin Sites, a former CNN war correspondent, NBC News producer and "backpack journalist," as its first-ever news correspondent.

Charged with posting multimedia content on a Yahoo News blog called "Kevin Sites in the Hot Zone," Sites will cover "every major global conflict" over the next year, according to the company.

"These areas of conflict are typically left uncovered or under-reported by mainstream news organizations," Yahoo said. "The goal of this project is to bring these important stories to Yahoo's global audience of nearly 400 million users."