When it comes to money, there’s nothing as empowering as having a good understanding of your finances and achieving financial freedom. However, women can often struggle to feel confident in their ability to invest or simply save altogether. On average, women invest 40 percent less than men and retire with two-thirds of the money — not sure about you, but in 2020, there’s absolutely no room for that kind of imbalance.
Again, part of the reason why women invest less than men can be due to a lack of confidence in financial knowledge. In a recent study, 68% of men said they’re confident in the way they manage their investments, compared to 52% of women. On the bright side, even with these insecurities, studies show that women investors actually outperform men. In fact, between three different studies from Fidelity, the Warwick Business School, and the University of California, Berkely, women have been found to surpass male investors by 0.4 to 1.8 percent annually. Although this may not seem like much, when you compound annually and add to the fact that women trade less frequently and therefore pay less trading fees, this small percentage can turn into significant returns.
And we know it can be frustrating to think about all the hurdles women have to jump compared to men. From the pink tax and the wage gap to good old fashioned discrimination, here’s yet another thing to add to the pile. But although the wage gap is important and we’re not suggesting you ignore it, the investment gap may end up costing you the most — over a million dollars in potential retirement money, in fact. So although a raise is great and being paid just as much as your male counterparts is even better, a bump in your salary isn’t likely to secure a comfortable retirement.
If you want to become an investor and make your money work for you, start by educating yourself on investment basics. It’s important to remember that investments come with risks and no one ever feels fully confident in their decisions (even men). Once you have a good understanding of how they work and the markets you’d like to invest in, it’s time to make your first money moves towards having successful personal finances.
To get you started on the right foot and hopefully encourage you to begin your journey towards a financially independent future, we collected inspiring advice from the top female leaders across several industries. From businesswomen and entrepreneurs to top financial advisors and Wall Street executives, this advice is a great stepping stone to start investing.
Fidelity | University of California | WBS | Style Salute | Reuters | Merrill | Investopedia | Fast Company | Eventual Millionaire | Laura Adams | Bethenny Frankel | The Simple Dollar | Money | SoFi | The Balance Careers | Bank of America | Fidelity | CNBC | Pensions Institute