Curriculum Guide · Courses
Sovereign Debt and Financial Stability Seminar
J.D. Seminar 1191 (cross-listed) | 2 credit hours
This seminar will examine sovereign debt and its role in national and global financial systems. By the end of 2012, national governments had borrowed over $40 trillion from private creditors at home and abroad, and hundreds of billions of dollars more from one another and from international organizations. Government debt is a popular savings vehicle, a benchmark for pricing the risk of corporate debt, and the core asset in national and global financial systems. Sovereign governments may also guarantee borrowing by other important economic actors, from cities and provinces to banks and housing lenders. In many ways, sovereign debt functions like money. Yet it is also effectively unenforceable, since most of the debtors’ property is either immune or inaccessible to creditors. In addition to the basic policy, doctrinal and theoretical concepts in sovereign borrowing and restructurings, we will study recent crises in Europe and Latin America, reform proposals, and implications for the financial system.
Recommended: Background in financial regulation and/or public international law would be helpful, but not essential.