A recent study says that women are far better at investment when they get into it. However, a survey on the percentage of women compared to men regarding investment is not too bright. As per a recent report by Minneapolis-based Thrivent Financial, 18% women invest in stocks as compared to 40% men. The picture is not much different across geography. Like it or not, women shy away from money matters. But more important is why women need to be proactive about investment and how they can be encouraged to do so. Here’s what these successful female advisors suggest.
Kate Stalter, founder of the independent fiduciary firm Better Money Decisions, points out that due to increased life expectancy and the fact that women usually outlive their husband, it is a must to make financial plans way ahead because “In those later years, there’s no more opportunity to make money to finance one’s living expenses; it’s increasingly crucial to plan, save and invest prudently for a longer life than you may imagine”.
Esther Szabo, CEO of Gates Pass Advisors suggests that one mustn’t feel bad at not knowing about finances and rather approach someone who knows it well. If one is not sure how to begin, one should connect to an advisor who’ll not spout jargon but simplify the process and help you learn. As an advisor, she emphasises that it’s important to understand the client’s anxiety and concerns to get them started. April Wilson, vice president at Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co.’s Pacific Capital Resource Group, emphasizes on the same point, “We speak the same language and find that we can connect with our female clients more easily and quickly,”
Meg Luo, associate professor of finance at Villanova University in Pennsylvania, believes that the world of investment is not intimidating to women specifically but to anyone who’s not good with numbers. And as women are more risk averse, when they do dabble in investment they perform much better. Hence, women shouldn’t consider themselves beneath men to let the men take over the financial reigns.
Last but not the least, women must feel comfortable to talk about investment. It’s ok to be wrong as long as you get it right and in time.