David Wessel

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David Meyer Wessel
Born (1954-02-21) February 21, 1954 (age 60)
Occupation Economics journalist
Awards Pulitzer Prize

David Meyer Wessel (born February 21, 1954) is an American journalist and writer who has shared two Pulitzer Prizes for journalism.[1] He is director of the Hutchins Center on Fiscal & Monetary Policy at the Brookings Institution and a contributing correspondent to The Wall Street Journal, where he worked for 30 years.[2] Wessel appears frequently on National Public Radio's "Morning Edition."[3][4]


Wessel is a native of New Haven, Connecticut. He is the son of Morris A. Wessel, a pediatrician, and Irmgard R. Wessel, a clinical social worker.[5] Wessel graduated from New Haven’s Richard C. Lee High School in 1971 and from Haverford College in 1975 where he majored in economics.[6] In 2009, he was awarded an honorary doctorate in humane letters by Eureka College.[7]

Wessel began his reporting career at the Middletown (Connecticut) Press in 1975 and joined the staff of the Hartford Courant in 1977. He left Hartford in 1980 to spend a year as a Knight Bagehot Fellow in Business and Economics Journalism at Columbia University.[8] He moved to The Boston Globe in 1981 and was hired in 1983 as a reporter in the WSJ Boston bureau. He transferred to the Washington bureau in 1987 and worked there for the duration of his time at the WSJ, except for a brief period as the paper's Berlin bureau chief in 1999-2000.[9] On December 4, 2013, The Brookings Institution announced that Wessel would become the founding director of its new Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy. Wessel indicated that he would continue to contribute to The Journal.[10]

Wessel and his wife Naomi Karp, a policy analyst at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Office for Older Americans,[11] have two children, Julia and Ben.[4]


Wessel has shared two Pulitzer Prizes for journalism. The Boston Globe and seven of its staff won the Pulitzer Prize for Local Investigative Specialized Reporting, citing a 1983 "series examining race relations in Boston, a notable exercise in public service that turned a searching gaze on some the city's most honored institutions including The Globe itself."[12] on the persistence of racism in employment in Boston

He and others on the WSJ staff were nominated for Public Service in 2003 but awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting, citing "clear, concise and comprehensive stories that illuminated the roots, significance and impact of corporate scandals in America."[13]


Wessel is the author of three books and the editor of Central Banking after the Great Recession (2014), which features an interview between Ben Bernanke and Liaquat Ahamed as well as chapters by John C. Williams, Donald Kohn, and Paul Tucker.[14]

Prosperity (1998), co-written with Bob Davis, is a look at the prospects for the American middle class. In Fed We Trust: Ben Bernanke’s War on the Great Panic (2009), a New York Times Best Seller, chronicles the Federal Reserve response to the global financial crisis of the early 21st century. Michiko Kakuatani's review in The New York Times calls it "essential, lucid — and, it turns out, riveting — reading".[15] The latest is Red Ink (July 2012), a primer on the federal budget and the deficit.


  1. ^ "David Wessel - News, Articles, Biography, Photos - WSJ.com". Topics.wsj.com. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  2. ^ "David Wessel biography page at the Brookings Institution". The Brookings Institution. Retrieved 2014-04-07. 
  3. ^ "Is Deficit Fever Easing?". Npr.org. Retrieved 2013-11-03. 
  4. ^ a b "David Wessel | Washington Week". Pbs.org. Retrieved 2014-01-05. 
  5. ^ "City Native Expands His 'Scope'". New Haven Register. Retrieved 2014-08-04. 
  6. ^ "MICHAEL PAULSON ’86 AND DAVID WESSEL ’75 AMONG 2003 PULITZER WINNERS - Haverford College News". Haverford.edu. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  7. ^ "Eureka College graduates its largest class ever". Pantagraph.com. 2009-05-10. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  8. ^ "Knight-Bagehot Fellowship : Annual Report of the Director 2010-2011". Journalism.columbia.edu. Retrieved 2013-11-03. 
  9. ^ [1][dead link]
  10. ^ [2]
  11. ^ [3]
  12. ^ "The Pulitzer Prizes | Public Service". Pulitzer.org. 1985-08-02. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  13. ^ "The Pulitzer Prizes | Citation". Pulitzer.org. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  14. ^ "Central Banking after the Great Recession". The Brookings Institution. Retrieved 2014-04-07. 
  15. ^ Michiko Kakutani. "Inside the Meltdown: Financial Ruin and the Race to Contain It". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-11-03. 

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