While millennials are taking a goal-oriented approach toward their retirement, they align with Americans overall in thinking they could be more proactive. Nearly half (48 percent) of Americans say they are most insecure about some aspect of their finances (financial future, retirement savings or income), with retirement savings (21 percent) being one of their top insecurities, ahead of their personal relationships (10 percent), judgment of others (6 percent) and career path (4 percent).
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FEMALE VOICE 8: Since I became part of the Global Ambassador's Program I dare to dream bigger, and I know that I have this amazing network of women that are ready to help. It's not only during the mentorship we've developed a relationship that has lasted and will last. Because of the diversity of the people that participate and the different backgrounds of the mentors, of the mentees, and that exchange between women it brings down all of the barriers that we see in society. You see mentors and mentees all working towards developing those businesses and developing those people, and there's no competition whatsoever, and that is just amazing. That's an amazing barrier to break.
Investing itself, we’re in favor of. (You might have picked up on that, since we’re a company named Ellevest.) Especially investing in low-cost, well-diversified investment portfolios. That’s because — we’ve said it before, and we’ll keep saying it — we really, really need to fix the gender investing gap. Women don’t invest as much as men — we keep 71% of our money in cash (in other words, out of the market). This is part of the reason that we retire with two-thirds the money of men (even though we live longer).
Since the early 2000s RobecoSAM, a sustainable-investment specialist that assesses thousands of public companies on environmental and social criteria, has included measures of gender equality, such as equitable pay and talent management. After realising that in the decade to 2014 firms that scored well on these measures had better returns than those scoring poorly, it launched a gender-equality fund in 2015. Since then it has outperformed the global large-cap benchmark.
Moreover, the evidence suggests that your team will be stronger if it consists of both men and women. A 2011 Harvard Business Review study discovered that single-gender teams were less effective at problem solving than mixed groups. The Barber-Odean study found that married men performed better than single men in the stock market and concluded that this was likely due to a spouse’s influence. “When you ask if men or women are the better investors, you’re asking the wrong question,” says Suzanne Duncan, global head of research at the State Street Center for Applied Research, a think tank sponsored by the big financial-services firm. “We are better together. Men and women should have an equal voice in the investment process.”
There’s also a concept I think you should be familiar with. It’s called passive investing. The idea is that it’s smarter to invest across the entire market and then not pay attention to it, than it is to pick stocks or pay someone else to pick stocks. It’s easier and less expensive, and historically it’s been more successful. In fact, Warren Buffett made a $1 million wager that passive investing would beat hedge funds—and he was right. It’s why he advises his heirs to invest passively with their money.
The good news: Organizations like Rock The Street, Wall Street (a 501(c)(3) nonprofit) aim to fill in the gaps. It’s a year-long financial literacy program that educates high school girls about careers in finance, and the program includes education about saving, investing, capital markets and financial preparedness for college. Nonprofits like this tend to accept one-time or recurring donations of any size.
Against this backdrop, countless talented female bankers have emerged in positions of power and influence in the last ten years, and contributed to the region's thriving status. Going by the strong network of up and coming female financiers, women will continue their march on high finance in Asia. finews.asia names the region's top twelve most influential female bankers.
MS. TURLINGTON BURNS: With your help we can do so much more. Together our community has run millions of miles to raise awareness and funds to support this critical care. Sharing your stories and those of our grantees is helping to educate and engage the public. We're investing in providers of life-saving care that are making childbirth safer. We're building a movement that's impacting millions of lives—one mother at a time. When I come back to Haiti and I see the impact we have made here, I think that anything is possible. So, join us. Together we can make pregnancy and childbirth safer for every mother, everywhere.
Positive intent can be a powerful motivating force for change and growth in our lives, but the truth is that it’s often not enough—this is the reason why the majority of us fail to completely commit and follow through on the resolutions we make each year. The truth is, most resolutions flounder in the starting gate without any real forward progress ever being made, and many others are met with a feeble, half-hearted effort that eventually goes nowhere. We need more than a positive attitude and hope—we need a plan.
This problem may also result from a reluctance to talk about money. Women talk about marriage, kids, college, politics, religion, shopping and sex, but money matters tend to be taboo. “Men have no trouble talking about money, but it’s the one thing that women are hesitant to discuss,” says Zaneilia Harris, a certified financial planner and author of the book Finance ’n Stilettos. “If you won’t initiate that conversation, you’re hurting yourself. Sharing stories about money is a great way to learn.”
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Navigating a path to financial security is easier and more rewarding when it’s mapped out. Being prepared is the easy answer, whether married or single, we will encourage you to assert your vision and values about money and investing. We will help you create a safe money strategy through an ongoing series for women of wealth that is designed to engage and build confidence for all our female clients.
2. Make “friends” with risk. Women prefer to preserve wealth even if it means giving up higher returns. Take a 51-year-old attorney (who preferred not to give her name) as an example; she has consistently contributed the maximum allowed by her law firm’s retirement plan. “I know I should be investing in stocks, but I don’t want a repeat of 2008. My money is parked in a money market fund, where I know it’s safe.”
My dad doesn’t even understand what I do. Within finance there are different departments and what I do is help companies raise money. Companies can raise money by issuing stock. I don’t do stock but I do bonds, which is kind of like a contract, like a mortgage. It’s a contract between the companies and the investors basically helping the company to borrow money from investors.
When I got my first management position nearly 15 years ago, My global manager said to remember, 'Transparency and honesty are key to managing relationships and gaining trust from people. And it’s harder than you think.' It’s true. It’s incredibly hard sometimes to deliver a message you know someone is not going to like, but in the long run, it really pays off to be as transparent about a situation as you can be.