, Chief Economist, Department of the Navy
Dr. Nayantara Hensel is the Chief Economist for the Department of the Navy, and works in the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Cost and Economics). She provides economic guidance on defense industrial base issues, growth projections, the federal budget, interest rates, unemployment, exchange rates, inflation, the financial health of defense contractors, as well as trends in the broader economy and in the defense sector. Dr. Hensel’s economic analysis, Economic Currents, is issued every two months to the Secretary of the Navy, the Chief of Naval Operations, the ASN’s and DASN’s, the DoD Comptroller, and other senior DoD and DoN leadership and covers many of these topics.
Dr. Hensel received her BA, MA, and Ph,D. from Harvard University, where she graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa and specialized in finance and economics. She has taught at Harvard University, the Stern School of Business at New York University (NYU), and the US Naval Postgraduate School’s Graduate School of Business and Public Policy. In the private sector, Dr. Hensel previously served as Senior Manager and Chief Economist for Ernst & Young’s litigation advisory group, managing economist for the New York City office of the Law and Economics Consulting Group (LECG), and an economist in the economic consulting arm of Marsh & McLennan.
Dr. Hensel has written over 30 articles and research reports. Her recent research has focused on globalization and the US defense industrial base (the USAF tanker competition), the role of defense mergers in improving weapons systems cost efficiency, efficiency in IPO auctions relative to traditional processes, the factors impacting discount rates for US Marine Corps personnel, and market structure-specific and firm-specific factors impacting economies of scale and density in European and Japanese banks. She has published in the International Journal of Managerial Finance, the Review of Financial Economics, Business Economics, the European Financial Management Journal, the Journal of Financial Transformation, and Harvard Business School Working Knowledge.
Dr. Hensel has presented her work at a variety of institutions, including the Federal Reserve Banks in Chicago, Dallas, Boston, and Cleveland, the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, Department of Justice, the US Treasury, and RAND, as well as universities, such as London Business School, and Harvard University. Dr. Hensel is also a frequent presenter at conferences, including the USAF Air and Space Technology Exposition, the NBER National Security Working Group, the National Association for Business Economists (NABE) annual conference, the Western Economics Association, the Midwestern Economics Association, and the European Financial Management Association. She has appeared a number of times on CNBC and Bloomberg. Dr. Hensel is a Board member of the National Association of Business Economists and an elected member to the National Business Economics Issues Council (NBEIC), an organization of the top 34 corporate and government economists in the US.