CNBC yesterday unveiled its all new website, after ending its five-year licensing agreement with MSN Money. The site has many new features, with a range of video clips and market updates.

The site features a the usual array of video clips, including market news to extended interviews with business leaders. will show up to eight hours of live video each day, and already has around 15,000 videos for on-demand use.

According to CNBC President Mark Hoffman:

“ delivers all the analysis and access viewers expect from CNBC while affording breadth, depth and personalization features that simply aren’t possible on television.”

“ also offers users the chance to stay up-to-date with CNBC even when they cannot watch CNBC on their television.”

CNBC has hired an additional 55 employees to operate the website, and will offer premium features for $10 per month, including access to archive video and live streaming videos.

However, the majority of the site’s services, including a range of video and news content, a blog, and a customisable stock-ticker, are free and supported by ad content.

CNBC operated its own website between 1998 and 2001, but after that the station, which is part of NBC Universal, operated as a data feed for Microsoft’s MSN portal.

So does it work?
Well yes, though it feels a bit clunky and pages are taking too long to load in my opinion. That said, the site is full of rich content and the video quality in particular is good, so people may well be prepared to wait.

There’s a big focus on user interaction, with ‘Send A Comment’ links on the homepage allowing readers to communicate directly with the programme makers.

CNBC claims to have introduced “visible tags”, which is a good idea, but we can’t see any sign of them.

Overall, the site design is portalesque and looks cluttered, and worse, it appears to use ghastly iframes in places.

Perhaps the most annoying thing of all is that the smart people who developed the site have disabled the back button, for reasons best known to themselves. Does it count as an extra page impression when you hit the back button and the page refreshes? In the words of Vic Reeves: “Very Poor.”