Nela Richardson

Occupation: Businesswoman, Economist;

Position: SVP, Chief Economist & Co-head of the ADP Research Institute;

Company: Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP);

Industry: Business services, Software;

Residence: United States;

Nationality: American;

Nela Richardson

Nela Richardson is Chief Economist at ADP since November of 2020. She is the co-head of the ADP Research Institute and leads economic research for ADP. 

Nela Richardson, Ph.D., is chief economist at Redfin, an online real estate brokerage and research firm. She leads the company’s efforts to leverage their vast database to inform consumers about the ever changing housing market.

Personal Attributes and Interests

  • In high school, she travelled to her home state’s small towns as the state debate champion. It was an education, she told Fortune magazine, in learning to engage with people who think very differently.

Work Experience

Ms. Richardson is an experienced financial economist specializing in capital markets, housing economics and monetary policy. Proven manager and expert in media relations and brand building using advanced data science techniques and analysis. Experienced in the development and management of data science projects, personnel and research, as well as machine learning, econometrics and mathematical modeling applied to finance and consumer behavior.

  • Previously Ms. Richardson was Principal and Investment Strategist at Edward Jones, a financial services firm.  In that role, Nela analyzed and interpreted economic trends and financial market conditions and recommended investment strategies.  
  • Ms. Richardson is also the former chief economist at Redfin Corp., a national real estate brokerage and technology company, where she led a team of data scientists, economists and writers to track trends in the housing market. 
  • Ms. Richardson also served as a senior economist for Bloomberg, L.P., covering housing and financial markets. 
  • Ms. Richardson worked as a research economist at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and was a member of its Dodd-Frank financial reform rulemaking team. 
  • She has held research positions at Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies.
  •  Ms. Richardson also served as a senior economist at Freddie Mac.
  • She also worked as an adjunct finance professor at the Carey School of Business at John Hopkins University.
  • Ms. Richardson is a graduate intern at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.

Board and Advisor Roles

Ms. Richardson serves on the foundation board for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and is a member of the Conference of Business Economists.


Ms. Richardson regularly provides insight on the economy, real estate trends and capital markets to policymakers, consumers and media. She is a regular contributor to Marketplace from American Public Media and has frequently appeared on CNBC, Bloomberg, Fox Business CNN, Yahoo Finance, the Wall Street Journal, FORTUNE magazine, The New York Times and other national and local media.


Ms. Richardson earned a doctorate in economics from the University of Maryland-College Park with concentrations in financial economics, international finance and economic development. She obtained a master’s degree in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University in Bloomington, where she was a triple major in mathematics, economics and philosophy.

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