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Mark L. J. Wright Senior Vice President & Director of Research

Minneapolis, Minnesota USA

Research interests

Sovereign default, International financial crises

Mark L. J. Wright is senior vice president and director of research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. In this role, he oversees key research efforts at the Minneapolis Fed and advises the Bank’s president on monetary policy and related matters. Prior to coming to Minneapolis, Wright was a senior economist and research advisor in the Economic Research Department at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

Wright has been an associate professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, and an assistant professor at Stanford University. He has been an economist and advisor to the Reserve Bank of Australia and the Federal Reserve Banks of San Francisco and Minneapolis, as well as an instructor at the IMF Institute.

Wright received a B.A. in economics from the University of Sydney, Australia, and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago. His research examines the macroeconomics of developing countries, with a specific focus on their tendency to be prone to international financial crises. Much of his recent work has been devoted to sovereign default and the process by which sovereign debts are restructured.

February 2020

Deconstructing Delays in Sovereign Debt Restructuring
2019 | Oxford Economic Papers, 71(2): 382-404 | With David Benjamin
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Working Paper 753

Bad Investments and Missed Opportunities? Postwar Capital Flows to Asia and Latin America
2018 | American Economic Review, 108(12): 3541-3582 | With Lee E. Ohanian and Paulina Restrepo-Echavarria
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Staff Report 563
Related: Mark Wright interview with the AEA.

Restructuring Venezuela's Debt: Lessons from the Past and Implications for the Future
2018 | Journal of Investing, 27(3): 74-79 | With Camilo Alvarez and Daniel A. Dias

USA-Steuerreform 2018: Steuern und Sozialabgaben im Vergleich mit Deutschland
2018 | Zeitschrift für Internationales Steuerrecht, 4: 143-155 | With Lorenz J. Jarass and Anthony E. Tokman

Steuern und Sozialabgaben in den USA und in Deutschland: Update nach der US-Steuerreform 2018
2018 | Betriebs-Berater, 8: 412-418 | With Lorenz J. Jarass and Anthony E. Tokman

The Effects of U.S. Tax Reform: Comparing Taxes and Social Contributions in the U.S. and Germany
2018 | Tax Notes International, 89(5): 433-447 | With Lorenz J. Jarass and Anthony E. Tokman

Steuern und Sozialabgaben in den USA und in Deutschland
2017 | Betriebs-Berater, 48: 2839-2846 | With Lorenz J. Jarass and Anthony E. Tokman

Settlement Games with Rank-Order Payoffs and Applications to Sovereign Debt Restructuring
2017 | Economic Theory, 64(4): 847-876 | With Rohan Pitchford

Under-insurance in Human Capital Models with Limited Enforcement
2017 | Review of Economic Dynamics, 25: 121-150 | With Tom Krebs and Moritz Kuhn
Code and Data Files (zip)

External and Public Debt Crises
2016 | NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2015, 30: 191-244 | With Cristina Arellano and Andrew Atkeson
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Staff Report 515

Human Capital Risk, Contract Enforcement, and the Macroeconomy
2015 | American Economic Review, 105(11): 3223-3272 | With Tom Krebs and Moritz Kuhn
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Working Paper 2014-09

The Stock of External Sovereign Debt: Can We Take the Data at 'Face Value'?
2014 | Journal of International Economics, 94(1): 1-17 | With Daniel A. Dias and Christine Richmond
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Working Paper 2014-05

Interpreting the Pari Passu Clause in Sovereign Bond Contracts: It is All Hebrew (and Aramaic) to Me
2014 | Capital Markets Law Journal 9(3): 259-265
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Working Paper 2014-06

GDP-Indexed Bonds: A Tool to Reduce Macroeconomic Risk?
2014 | The Future of Sovereign Borrowing in Europe: SUERF Study 2013/5, Morten Balling, Ernest Gnan and Johannes Holler, Eds., Chapter 8: 101-118 | With Guido Sandleris

Comment on “Sovereign Debt Markets in Turbulent Times: Creditor Discrimination and Crowding-Out Effects” by Broner, Erce, Martin and Ventura
2014 | Journal of Monetary Economics, 61: 143-147

Strategic Behavior in Sovereign Debt Restructuring: Impact and Policy Responses
2014 | Life After Debt, Joseph E. Stiglitz and Daniel Heymann, Eds., Chapter 3: 179-190 | With Rohan Pitchford

The Costs of Financial Crises: Resource Misallocation, Productivity, and Welfare in the 2001 Argentine Crisis
2013 | The Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 116(1): 87-127 | With Guido Sandleris

On the Contribution of Game Theory to the Study of Sovereign Debt and Default
2013 | Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 29(4): 649-667 | With Rohan Pitchford

Empirical Research on Sovereign Debt and Default
2013 | Annual Review of Economics, 5: 247-272 | With Michael Tomz
Previously: Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Working Paper 2012-06

Sovereign Debt Restructuring: Problems and Prospects
2012 | Harvard Business Law Review, 2(1): 153-198

Holdouts in Sovereign Debt Restructuring: A Theory of Negotiation in a Weak Contractual Environment
2012 | Review of Economic Studies, 79(2): 812-837 | With Rohan Pitchford

The Pari Passu Clause in Sovereign Bond Contracts: Evolution or Intelligent Design?
2011 | Hofstra Law Review, 40(1): 103-114

Restructuring Sovereign Debts with Private Sector Creditors: Theory and Practice
2010 | Sovereign Debt and the Financial Crisis: Will Thie Time Be Different?, Carlos A. Primo Braga and Galli A. Vincelette, Eds., Chapter 12: 295-315

Capital Flows and Macroeconomic Performance: Lessons from the Golden Era of International Finance
2010 | American Economic Reivew, 100(2): 68-72 | With Lee E. Ohanian

Sovereign Theft: Theory and Evidence about Sovereign Default and Expropriation
2010 | The Natural Resources Trap: Private Investment without Public Commitment, William Hogan and Federico Sturzenegger, Eds., Chapter 3: 69-110 | With Michael Tomz
Replication dataset (zip)

Establishment Size Dynamics in the Aggregate Economy
2007 | American Economic Review, 97(5): 1639-1666 | With Esteban Rossi-Hansberg
Dataset (zip)

Do Countries Default in "Bad Times"?
2007 | Journal of the European Economic Association, 5(2-3): 352-360 | With Michael Tomz

Urban Structure and Growth
2007 | Review of Economic Studies, 74(2): 597-624 | With Esteban Rossi-Hansberg

Private Capital Flows, Capital Controls, and Default Risk
2006 | Journal of International Economics, 69(1): 120-149

On the Gains from International Financial Integration
2005 | Economics Letters, 87(3): 379-386

Coordinating Creditors
2005 | American Economic Review, 95(2): 388-392

New Empirical Results on Default: A Discussion of "A Gravity Model of Sovereign Lending: Trade, Default and Credit"
2004 | IMF Staff Papers, 51: 66-74

Solutions Manual for Recursive Methods in Economic Dynamics
2003 | Harvard University Press | With Claudio Irigoyen and Esteban Rossi-Hansberg

William T. Thornton on the Economics of Trade Unions: An Early Contribution to Efficient Bargaining Theory
2002 | International Journal of Applied Economics and Econometrics, 10(2): 218-254 | With Mark Donoghue

Internationalisation, Firm Conduct and Productivity
1994 | International Integration of the Australian Economy, eds. Philip Lowe and Jacqueline Dwyer: 51-106 | With Henry Ergas

In Minnesota, an Economics Research Revolution 50 Years Strong
August 10, 2019 | Star Tribune | With Art Rolnick

Private Market Must be a Central Part of Affordable-Housing Solution
October 17, 2018 | Star Tribune | With Ron J. Feldman

Striking a New Bargain: Better Jobs for More Americans
May 30, 2018 | MinnPost

Support of Native American Early Childhood Development
March 2018 | Healthy Children, Healthy Nations: Final Report, p. 18

New Effort will take Aim at Growth and Opportunity Gaps; Here's How
June 23, 2017 | Star Tribune | With Ron J. Feldman

The Direction of Capital Flows
2016 | Economic Synopses, No. 22 | With Lee E. Ohanian and Paula Restrepo-Echavarria

Debt Statistics a la Carte: Alternative Recipes for Measuring Government Indebtedness
2016 | Chicago Fed Letter, No. 362 | With Daniel A. Dias

How Much Debt Does the U.S. Government Owe?
2016 | Chicago Fed Letter, No. 353 | With Rebecca Friedman

Debt Crises in Europe and US states: Sovereign Spillovers on Private Borrowers
2016 | | With Cristina Arellano and Andy Atkeson

Debt Statistics a la Carte: Alternative Recipes for Measuring Government Indebtedness
November 17, 2015 | IFDP Notes | With Daniel A. Dias

Alternative Measures of Government Indebtedness
2015 | | With Daniel A. Dias
Republished as: "Is Greece More Indebted than Portugal or Ireland?", World Economic Forum, November 16, 2015.

Sovereign Debt Repayments: Evidence on Seniority
2015 | | With Matthias Schlegl and Christoph Trebesch

Where Has All the Productivity Gone?
2013 | Chicago Fed Letter, No. 306 | With Jake Fabina

Interviewed: "Can the Fed Fight Inequality? Kashkari Says Yes, Hires an Ally"
November 24, 2019 | Bloomberg | By Matthew Boesler

Presenter: "Deception, Self Deception, and Sovereign Debt Statistics"
November 7, 2019 | IMF Annual Research Conference: Session 1 - Measuring Debt
Mark's portion begins at minute 57.

Interviewed: "Signs Point to National Recession. What Might That Mean for Minnesota?"
August 27, 2019 | MinnPost | By Greta Kaul

Interviewed: "Is an Economic Storm Brewing?"
July 26, 2019 | Finance & Commerce | By Dan Emerson

Interviewed: "Increase Supply of Housing, Incentivize Private Sector to Build More, Recognize Trade-Offs and Shared Sacrifice"
July 12, 2019 | Minnesota Affordable Housing Policy Interview

Interviewed: "Twin Cities Apartment Boom Leaves People Behind"
May 7, 2019 | Fox 9 News

Interviewed: "Game of Thrones' Iron Bank, Explained"
April 12, 2019 | Marketplace | By Janet Nguyen

Interviewed: "Game of Thrones: Why Sansa Could Win it All"
April 9, 2019 | AP News | By Christopher Rugaber, Josh Boak, Paul Wiseman

Interviewed: "With Minnesota Unemployment so Low, Why aren't Wages Going up More?"
February 5, 2019 | MinnPost | By Greta Kaul

Interviewed: "When Nations Don't Pay Their Debts"
Third Quarter 2018 | Econ Focus | By Tim Sablik

Interviewed: "Domestic Policies with International Consequences"
December 14, 2018 | AEA Research Highlights | By Tyler Smith

Interviewed: "The '80s are Thriving at Trump's Fed"
August 7, 2018 | Bloomberg Markets Magazine | By Matthew Boesler

Interviewed: "Ominous national debt projections not seen as big business concern — yet"
July 7, 2018 | The Star Tribune | By Jim Spencer

Interviewed: "Market Forces, Regulation Have Worked Against More Affordable Housing"
June 30, 2018 | The Star Tribune | By Lee Schafer

Interviewed: "Rising Oil Prices Pump Up Prospects for Permian Basin Towns"
June 26, 2018 | The Wall Street Journal | By Rebecca Elliott and Harriet Torry

Interviewed: "Fed Reserve Advisory Board Seeks "Alternative" Solutions to Racial Economic Disparities"
June 14, 2018 | Minneosta Spokesman-Recorder | By Charles Hallman

Presenter: "Lessons from Sovereign Debt: State and Local Financing"
April 26, 2018 | Heller-Hurwicz Economics Institute's Spring Roundtable | With Manuel Amador and V. V. Chari
Summary of event
Video of event

Interviewed: "Fed Sees GDP Hit from Trade War Outweighing Fleeting Inflation"
April 11, 2018 | Bloomberg | By Matthew Boesler

Town Hall Presentation: "An Economic Outlook with Mark Wright"
March 28, 2018 | YouTube | Presentation Slides

Interview with Mark L.J. Wright
March 26, 2018 | The Region, 2017 Annual Report issue

Video interviews accompanying "Interview with Mark L.J. Wright"
March 26, 2018 | YouTube

Interviewed: "Minneapolis Fed to Study Effects of City's New Minimum Wage Rule"
March 6, 2018 | Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Updates | By Alyssa Augustine

Recorded panel presentation: "National Service Recovery Forum Panel Discussion: The Opioid Crisis and the Impact of Recovery"
February 13, 2018 | YouTube

Interviewed: "Intense Research and Debate Shape Minneapolis Fed President Kashkari's Dovish Take on Rate Hikes"
December 23, 2017 | Star Tribune | By Evan Ramstad

Research cited: Steuersätze sinken stärker als Belastung
December 20, 2017 | Handelsblatt | By Norbert Haering

Podcast guest: "Wealth of Westeros: The Economy of 'Game of Thrones', episode 8: 'Is Honesty the Best Economic Policy'"
August 29, 2017 | Associated Press | By Christopher S. Rugaber, Paul Wiseman, and Josh Boak

Research cited: "Some Historical Context: What if Venezuela Declared Default?"
February 13, 2016 | Post-Western World | By Oliver Stuenkel

Recorded presentation: Insurance in Human Capital Models with Limited Enforcement
December 16, 2015 | Human Capital and Inequality Conference

Video interview: "A Brief Interview with Mark Wright"
April 2015 | 30th Annual Conference on Macroeconomics

Research cited: "Public Finances: A World of Debt"
January 6, 2015 | Financial Times | By Robin Wigglesworth

Research cited: "What Happened to the Internet Productivity Miracle?"
April 1, 2013 | The New Yorker | By John Cassidy

Research cited: "Why is Productivity Slowing Down?"
January 28, 2013 | The Wall Street Journal: Real Time Economics | By Timothy Aeppel

Research cited: "The Productivity Slowdown, Part 2"
December 18, 2012 | The Seattle Times | By Jon Talton

Research cited: "The Productivity Slowdown, Part 1"
December 17, 2012 | The Seattle Times | By Jon Talton

Research cited: "What's in a Government Debt Number?"
November 1, 2011 | Financial Times: Alphaville | By Lisa Pollack

Research cited: "This is Not the End of the Road for Dubai".
November 30, 2009 | Financial Times | By Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi

Research cited: "Sets and the City"
September 1, 2004 | The Region | By Douglas Clement

Research cited: "It Could be We are Trading More but Enjoying it Less"
September 17, 1994 | Sydney Morning Herald | By Ross Gittins