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Olsen Returns As Chief Economist At Zillow

David Krechevsky
Jul 18, 2022
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Olsen was a foundational member of Zillow Economic Research.

Zillow on Monday announced the return of Skylar Olsen, Ph.D., as its chief economist.

Skylar Olsen, Ph.D.

Olsen was a foundational member of Zillow Economic Research, and her return “further strengthens that team of economists and analysts who provide unbiased data and analyses about the housing market to inform policymakers, journalists, academics, and consumers,” according to a Zillow news release.

“I’m honored to return to Zillow as chief economist and help home buyers, sellers, and renters across the country better understand their options and how to best navigate what has become an increasingly trying housing market,” Olsen said. “I truly revel in the opportunity to provide the tools and information to help people make some of the biggest, most impactful decisions of their lives.” 

Olsen was at Zillow from 2012 to 2020, most recently as senior principal economist. In the past two years, she’s built and supported public-facing economic and data programs in prop/fintech through Reimagine Economics, a consultancy she founded, and was head of economics at Tomo, a digital mortgage startup.

Olsen earned her Ph.D. in economics from the University of Washington, where she teaches Real Estate Evolution and Disruption.

Dr. Orphe Divounguy

Zillow said her return comes shortly after Orphe Divounguy, Ph.D., joined Zillow Economic Research as a senior economist. Divounguy joins Zillow after serving as chief economist at the Illinois Policy Institute.

He also is founder and lead consultant at Quantitative Research Group. He earned his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom.

Olsen and Divounguy join senior economists Jeff Tucker and Matthew Speakman; economist Nicole Bachaud; economic analyst Anushna Prakash; and data visualization specialist Elizabeth Kimn on the Zillow Research team. 

The team’s research can be found at and includes analyses about for-sale and rental market dynamics, fair housing, and other topics.

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