Intra-wire resistance and AC loss of various multi-filamentary MgB2 wires with filaments surrounded by Nb barriers have been measured and analyzed. The intra-wire resistance is measured with a direct four-probe voltage–current method at various temperatures. The AC loss is acquired by both vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM) and magnetization measurements at 4.2 K. With the aid of finite element method simulations, the filament-to-matrix contact resistance and effective transverse resistivity are derived from direct intra-wire resistance measurements. The effective transverse resistivity values are in good agreement with those analytically derived from the AC coupling loss measurements. Surprisingly, very high values of filament-to-matrix contact resistivity are found, being 2 or 3 orders higher than commonly found for NbTi or Nb3Sn wires.