Matthew Klein speaking

Matthew C. Klein Keynote Speaker

  • Winner of 2021 Lionel Gelber Prize and 2014 Eppy Award
  • Co-Author, 'Trade Wars are Class Wars' and Writer of 'The Overshoot', an essential subscription newsletter on the global economy
  • Renowned economics journalist featured in Barron's, the Financial Times, the Economist, amongst others

Matthew C. Klein's Biography

Matthew C. Klein is one of the “most astute commentators on the global economy” (Adam Tooze). He is read across the world by central bankers, chief economists, academics, policymakers, and investors. Klein has given background presentations to staffers of the U.K. Parliament, White House economic advisers, and officials at the European Commission. As a top analyst of both current events and longer-term trends, he can speak on everything from the state of the housing market or the latest decisions of the Federal Reserve to the impact of population aging or the economic legacy of Shinzo Abe.

Klein has over a decade of experience studying the intersection of economics, public policy, and financial markets. He has written for the Economist (2012-13), Bloomberg (2013-14), the Financial Times (2014-18), and Barron’s (2018-21), where he was the Economics Commentator. He now runs The Overshoot, a premium subscription research service dedicated to tracking the global economy.

His writings cover a range of subjects, including asset pricing, banking regulation, Brexit, Chinese currency management and credit policies, corporate tax avoidance, the coronavirus pandemic, demographics, the euro area’s ongoing evolution, global financial imbalances, housing cycles, inequality, inflation measurement, the Japanese economy, the supply and demand for labor, the minimum wage, monetary policy and negative interest rates, productivity and technological innovation, protectionism and trade conflict, and the U.S. political economy.

At the beginning of his career, Klein worked in global macro investment research at Bridgewater Associates. Following this, he was a Research Associate in international economic and financial history at the Council on Foreign Relations (2010-12).

Klein has received several awards and accolades throughout his career, including the 2021 Lionel Gelber Prize for his book ‘Trade Wars Are Class Wars: How Rising Inequality Distorts the Global Economy and Threatens International Peace’ (Yale, 2020) with Michael Pettis, and the 2014 Eppy Award for “Best Online Infographics on a Website with 1 million unique monthly visitors and over” for his examination of U.S. mortality statistics. Trade Wars Are Class Wars has been translated into traditional Chinese, French, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese.

Speaking Topics include:
  • Why inequality matters for the global economy: Why are interest rates so low and indebtedness so high? Why should business owners want workers to be paid more? In this non-ideological presentation based on his award-winning book, Matt explains why the distribution of income affects everything from asset prices to global trade flows.
  • The economic and financial impact of Covid-19: The pandemic upended the lives of billions of people. But the impact has been uneven both within and across countries. Policy responses have also varied widely, with the U.S. at one extreme and China on the other. In this wide-ranging global survey, Matt explains how the virus has affected the world economy and what it means for the years ahead.
  • Global imbalances past and present: Large trade deficits and large trade surpluses often lead to financial and economic crises. In this presentation based on his award-winning book, Matt explains how these international imbalances are rooted in domestic economic problems, and traces the history of these imbalances up through the present day.
  • The future of the dollar and global reserve currencies: U.S. Treasury Secretary John Connally famously said that the dollar is “our currency, but your problem.” Ever since, foreign leaders have tried to reduce the dollar’s global footprint. In this presentation based on his award-winning book, Matt explains why the dollar has endured, why previous challengers such as the euro failed to rival the dollar, why China’s yuan isn’t likely going to become a major global player, the prospects for new digital alternatives—and why the dollar’s primacy is ultimately harmful for most Americans.
  • The economic and financial impact of demographic change in the 21st century: The world is getting older, and aging is projected to accelerate rapidly in the coming decades in most of the places where economic activity is currently generated. At the same time, the populations of sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia are set to swell. These changes will have profound effects on society, politics, and markets. In this talk, Matt outlines what to expect as well as the policy responses that might smooth the transition.
  • The U.S. economy and the prospects of “Bidenomics”: President Biden came into office with narrow majorities in Congress and a reputation as a moderate, but he and his staffers have quickly attempted to position themselves as a transformative presidency along the lines of FDR and LBJ. In this talk, informed by a close reading of the data as well as personal knowledge of some of the advisers in Biden’s White House, Matt explains what’s happened so far, what’s being proposed, and the potential impact for the U.S. and global economies.
  • The Chinese Economy and Political Model: China’s rapid growth since 1978 has made the Communist Party’s system envied and admired across the world. But has China’s development been as successful as it appears? Even now, average incomes are about the same in China as in Mexico. In a talk based in part on his award-winning book, Matt looks at the longer trajectory of China’s economic history, the evolution of the CCP’s development model, the global consequences of the Chinese government’s domestic policy choices, and the longer-term prospects of China as a threat to the U.S. and other democracies.
  • The Future of Europe: The triumphalism of the 2000s is long gone and the acute phase of the euro crisis has ended, but the world’s second-largest economy was in the doldrums even before the pandemic. But could the continent’s response to the virus seed a more robust recovery? In a talk based in part on his award-winning book and a presentation he gave to members of the European Commission, Matt would explain how we got here and what to make of the current policy debates within the ECB and national governments.
  • Japan After Abe: After the bursting of the 1980s bubble, Japan endured more than two decades of apparent stagnation and decline. Shinzo Abe was elected in 2012 to break Japan out of its funk. In this talk based on nearly a decade covering the Japanese economy, including interviews of officials from the finance ministry and cabinet office, Klein re-assesses the pre-Abe period, provides a distinctive analysis of where Abe succeeded and failed, and looks at where Japan is likely headed after the pandemic.
Read More

Videos of Matthew C. Klein

The Agenda with Steve Paikin | Are Trade Wars Really Class Wars?
The Agenda with Steve Paikin | Are Trade Wars Really Class Wars?
Institute for New Economic Thinking | The Secular Rise of Debt
Institute for New Economic Thinking | The Secular Rise of Debt

Blogs & Articles

Books by Matthew C. Klein

Matthew C Klein jacket
Trade Wars are Class Wars: How Rising Inequality Distorts the Global Economy and Threatens International Peace

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