"When it comes to thinking about women in powerful positions, we are too often blinded by the daggers of the mind, infected by the malignant mind bugs that mire us in the prejudices of the past," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde once famously said. "We need a 21st century mentality for women’s economic participation. We need to flush away the flotsam of ingrained gender inequality."


Shelly Bell has lived many lives. She’s a computer scientist, a former high school teacher, a performance poet, a community organizer, a founder, and a CEO. She has two successful apparel printing businesses: MsPrint USA—through which she creates swag for clients like Amazon and Google with a team of women designers and printers—and Made By A Black Woman, which celebrates products made by Black women.
FAFSA and taxes. Whether a parent or guardian claims you as a dependent or you file taxes on your own determines whose information is required to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, and who can claim tax credits and deductions. Discuss your financial status before each school year and address any changes, like a raise or job loss.
Coming in, I expected that my colleagues would be ultra-Type A, all work/no play, super serious folks given the nature of our work. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the great relationships and friendships I’ve developed at work and the camaraderie on our floor. I also expected the job to be extremely difficult in terms of the learning curve and was worried about my ability to handle it. It certainly is challenging, but with the support of my colleagues and mentors, I can really map out how much I’ve grown and learned over the past year. Everyone wants each other to succeed.
After setting up this organization and being a profitable business which makes us sustainable we realized that we were still not changing some habits in these families. Yes, they had a steady income but if the kid said, "I want to drop out of school when I'm 12," the mother said okay, fine, you don't want to go to school? Don't go to school. Or they were having Coca-Cola for breakfast, not that I have anything against Coca-Cola, but if they're suffering from diabetes maybe it's better that they have oranges, that they have orange trees in the backyard. 

MS. JOSEFINA URZAIZ: Thank you. First of all, well thank you, I'm very grateful to be here and honored to be part of this as a mentee in this week. Our organizations that lead have the goal to alleviate poverty, and the way we do this is by empowering women in rural communities in Mexico where I'm from. We employ 900 women who hand weave the hammocks from home, so I don't break that family structure. And to give you perspective, each hammock takes about two weeks to weave because they do it in their spare time, and the impact that we have reaches 3,200 people on an everyday basis.
MS. SPELLINGS: Well, in Charlotte you can't say that too much because we have people like Andrea Smith who are leading the Chamber of Commerce, and of course a woman that is the mayor, and the superintendent here is a woman, and one of my board of governors' members I think is here, Anna Nelson, and on and on and on, Ophelia Garmon-Brown who has been so instrumental in the economic mobility work here. But that notwithstanding, there are gaps and, you know, when you, and when you're in a place like Washington there is such a public service mentality and so many opportunities for women, we'll get into some of that, but I am puzzled by that, particularly when most, I mean women are going to college and getting out of college at rates that far exceed, and we need to work on our men obviously, but that exceed women. So, what happens between the time that we're getting out of college, attaining at high levels, and being in those leadership roles? We get lost. Right? Which is why programs like this are so important.
Focusing on the goal is smart because it forces you to consider your personal needs rather than some arbitrary measure of success. “It’s not that women aren’t concerned about getting a great return,” says Zaneilia Harris, a certified financial planner and president of Harris & Harris Wealth Management, in Upper Marlboro, Md. “But they don’t care what their friends are doing; it’s all about their individual goals.”
MS. ALYSE NELSON: Well hello everyone, I'm Elise Nelson. I'm President and CEO of Vital Voices. Let me just first say how exciting it is to be here at the mothership of Bank of America. I heard it actually called that. Vital Voices, as you know, launched in partnership with Bank of America this really innovative partnership five years ago. So, it's quite special to be back here and to see so many people in this room who were really part of making it happen and looking at Zoe and Susan and of course Pam Seagle, and so many others who just made this a reality.
Top GWI Takeaway: “In investment banking, they’re always making DCF models. I’ve always wondered, ‘What does this stand for? What are they doing?’ While we were here we worked in Excel and found out about DCF. DCF stands for Discounted Cash Flow [and is a valuation method used to evaluate the attractiveness of an investment opportunity.] I saw [company] income statement, balance sheet, working capital, cash flows; these are all different sheets within Excel that you bring together to create the DCF. I also saw how it intertwined with finding the value of a company, because you have to account for inflation and how much a company would be worth in five years.”
Don’t attempt to boil the ocean. “The industry has been set up to make investing feel scary,” Katchen says. “The old boys club wants you to believe that you need them to tell you what to do with your money, but the basics are simple: Don’t spend more than you make, save regularly, and get into the markets, that’s the essence of what it’s all about.”
October 14, 2018, JAKARTA –  An important editorial on widening women’s access to financial services by Taimur Baig, Chief Economist of DBS Bank and member of Women’s World Banking’s Southeast Advisory Council, has been published in a special IMF edition of The Jakarta Post. The 2016 Financial Inclusion Survey, carried out by the Financial Service […]

He also found that cortisol levels rise during a market crash, increasing risk aversion among traders and exacerbating the decline. Since women have significant lower testosterone levels, Coates argues that they are less prone to the irrational exuberance associated with stock market bubbles. While the study by Coats is focused on biological factors, it is not the only study to draw similar conclusions with regard to the investment behavior differences between men and women.
But Stash’s analysis does find that male and female Stash users behave quite differently when markets become volatile. Stash examined its users’ behavior on two especially volatile days for markets in 2018—Feb. 5 and Feb. 8, when major stock indexes suffered big losses, moving into what Stash defines as correction territory. On those days, the men panicked: Men who use Stash were 87% more likely than women, on average, to sell an investment. That behavior continued through the following week, with the men remaining 76% more likely than the women to sell an investment.
2. "Do I look like a handout? I am independent woman and I expect men to pay for dates and I also want someone who can take care of me, if I choose to be a full-time housewife." This is one of the most common lines that I have heard. I am always confused what does this actually mean. Do you want to be a full time housewife or not? How can you claim to be independent while expecting men to pay? No, I am not kidding.

MS. VERVEER: And what about networks? Because I think the other thing that women tend to lack in many ways, and we see this in the economics sphere among entrepreneurs, but I think we also see it more broadly, which is the need to be able to come together to meet other people in our sphere, others who can help take an element of what we're doing and enable us to forge ahead. So, more of a concentration on networks as well, that development, which again I think is what the program represents.
I shared this experience with other female colleagues in the office, who agreed that it was totally inappropriate and assured me I’d have their full support if I wanted to report this incident to my manager. My manager (who is a male) was also extremely supportive, reaffirming that this is not the kind of behavior we’d want to espouse with future managers and leaders of the firm. He escalated the situation to HR, who has noted this on this employee’s record. While I’m not sure if any further steps will be taken, I’m glad there was an open communication channel between me and my manager where my opinion was respected and handled with sensitivity. 
While women investors are on the rise, there is still a gap between the number of men and women are in the investments market. Make sure you’re choosing a firm that will support your financial goals and understand the unique challenges that women face in the industry. Also take a look at the companies that these firms and platforms invest in. Are any of them led by women? Do they support women? While it may not immediately affect the return you get, choosing a firm or platform with a pro-women mindset will help us gain financial equality in the long-run.
Focusing on the goal is smart because it forces you to consider your personal needs rather than some arbitrary measure of success. “It’s not that women aren’t concerned about getting a great return,” says Zaneilia Harris, a certified financial planner and president of Harris & Harris Wealth Management, in Upper Marlboro, Md. “But they don’t care what their friends are doing; it’s all about their individual goals.”

Another difference is that men are more likely to say that outperforming the market is their top investment goal, whereas women tend to mention specific financial goals, such as buying a house or retiring at 60. Affluent women are more likely to seek financial advice and fewer direct their own investments compared with men, according to Cerulli, a research firm. But they seem to be less satisfied with the advice they are getting. A survey in 2016 by Econsult Solutions, a consultancy, found that 62% of women with significant assets under management would consider ditching their manager, compared with 44% of men. Anecdotally, millennial women who inherit wealth are prone to firing the advisers who came with it.


MS. NELSON: Well, we'll look forward to following your progress. Christine, I wonder about what Bank of America does internally. We've heard so much about what you're doing externally, and obviously I've seen it firsthand. But does that translate internally? What do you do for women employees and to spark women's leadership? I know you're doing something because over the last five years I've had the great opportunity to work with so many women leaders within Bank of America who've served as our global ambassadors, and I'm like, "This company is like made of amazing women. Not just so skilled but wanting to give back." And so, I wonder where does that come from within the company?
Looking back, I’d emphasize to never sell yourself short and believe in the value you can add to a client. I never thought my opinions and judgment as a 22-year-old would be valuable to a client (isn’t that what my bosses are for?), but this role elevates you to positions where you will be asked for your thoughts and asked to represent the firm in various client situations.
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.
MS. NELSON: So, Oulimata, I know that you are a Global Ambassador in this program, but you've also participated as a mentor for another program supported by Bank of America, the Cherie Blair Foundation's work with mentoring, particularly online mentoring. Can you talk a little bit about your experiences with both of those programs, first with the Cherie Blair Foundation?

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Then I had a second child about two years later and I would say after I delivered him, that's when I started to really think about what could I do and how could I do it. I was able to visit, while pregnant with my son, I visited Central America, which is where my mother is from, with CARE, the non-governmental organization. And in all of the visits that we did during the time that I was down there with them we came across One Water Program. It was a clean water project, and a lot of women were coming to get access to clean water, and getting like a little bit of ante-natal care or a little post-natal care while they were there. And because I was pregnant and because so many of the women were pregnant or had small children on their backs that's where I had the "Ah-ha!" moment of had I had my daughter in this community, far away from a hospital or, you know, paved roads, or clean water and sanitation, or you know, there were so many factors that I could see how it could have played out very differently had I been there or anywhere else for that matter.  

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.
As CEO of the Marketing Zen Group, we work with clients in a variety of industries, finance being one of them. Recently, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that one of our clients, Allegiance Capital Corporation, a premier middle-market investment bank, had launched a proactive initiative to attract more women for business development and investment banker roles. I was very curious to learn more. What compelled them to encourage women in an industry which has historically been known to be a “boys only” club?

although it sounds great---i am not being argumentative--that more females are getting into fields previously dominated by males, i think it is still an uphill battle thus important to get a feel to the environment and culture. there may be unwarranted traditions, but there may also be some practical considerations, that is, some fields are better suited for one sex vs the other for understandable reasons. say, most top surgeons are males. heck, most top OB GYNs are males!


Top GWI Takeaway: “An important thing to realize is that there are certain types of financial firms and investment strategies focused on doing some sort of social good. We’ve been learning about ESG investing, which is Environmental, Social and Governance Investing [which refers to three central factors in measuring the sustainability and ethical impact of in investment in a business]. That is something directly designed to make things better, but through the use of financial tools. We also found out about foundations and investing for not-for-profits. All of that combined has shown me that there is still a way to be in finance and pursue some form of public service. I was very interested in law and politics from the social-good perspective, and I’m seeing those worlds align with finance.” 

When it comes to managing your money, planning for retirement or paying for a major expense, your needs are unique. That’s why we’ve developed a set of tools and insights tailored to the economic goals and concerns of women. Build your financial savvy and talk to your trusted advisor for customized advice, so you can be ready to make the right decisions for the future you want - and deserve.
The other reason you need to be investing for retirement is that even if you did save every dollar you needed, by the time you got to retirement, the value of money would have fallen and you’ll need more dollars in order to maintain the same standard of living you’d enjoyed previously. The reason for that? Inflation, which raises prices by, on average, 2% or 3% annually. That’s why a gallon of milk might have cost $0.35 when your grandmother was a child and why it now costs $3.50. Here is a visual representation of what inflation does to the value of money over time:
These sentiments are certainly understandable, and I believe the way to change these perceptions is through educating people about finance, just as GWI is doing. As you mentioned, experience is the best way to learn about the industry, hence my partner and I are currently working on creating a student investment fund so that students can learn about finance fundamentals by managing a portfolio and making trades in the real world. Like you, we also plan to participate in the KWHS Investment Competition for the first time as well. Furthermore, just after learning about ESG from GWI Scholar Olivia Ott, I am going to research it more and include it in our Investment Policy Statement. I respect what GWI is doing, and I hope by exposing students to the more positive and interesting aspects of finance, I could dispel the incomplete and negative misconceptions. Eventually, I hope students of different genders and races can explore and perhaps commit to the finance industry in the future.
Coming in, I expected that my colleagues would be ultra-Type A, all work/no play, super serious folks given the nature of our work. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the great relationships and friendships I’ve developed at work and the camaraderie on our floor. I also expected the job to be extremely difficult in terms of the learning curve and was worried about my ability to handle it. It certainly is challenging, but with the support of my colleagues and mentors, I can really map out how much I’ve grown and learned over the past year. Everyone wants each other to succeed.
Bottom line, don't be something you're not. be firm, but not a real bitch who can't play well with others. Be nice, but don't be a pushover. Don't go into banking with self-doubts because you're a girl. Sure, there are definitely times where it will be awkward (guys who do just 'guy' things, talking about girls, etc) but it's best to just go with the flow in those instances.
Phil Town is an investment advisor, hedge fund manager, 3x NY Times best-selling author, ex-Grand Canyon river guide and a former Lieutenant in the US Army Special Forces. He and his wife, Melissa, share a passion for horses, polo, and eventing. Phil’s goal is to help you learn how to invest and achieve financial independence. You can follow him on google+, facebook, and twitter.
“It is important to broaden the students’ awareness of the various career paths to help them understand the magnitude of opportunities beyond investment banking,” Scott said. “Ultimately, we hope that all our students build on the skills they learn in the classroom and in their first destination jobs to find their area of interest. We regularly talk to the students about their careers being a marathon, with many pivots, twists and turns. It is not a sprint.”
She is also currently focusing on finding more access to capital, creating more revenue streams, getting more sponsorship, and creating more partnerships. Some of her most recent successes are corporate partnerships with both Bumble and Google Cloud for Startups, who are currently sponsoring the BGV Big 4 Tour through Atlanta, Chicago, DC, and NYC.
MS. NELSON: So, Oulimata, I know that you are a Global Ambassador in this program, but you've also participated as a mentor for another program supported by Bank of America, the Cherie Blair Foundation's work with mentoring, particularly online mentoring. Can you talk a little bit about your experiences with both of those programs, first with the Cherie Blair Foundation? 

Take, she said, a feature like tax-loss harvesting, a feature that involves selling losing investments so that investors can write off the loss on their taxes. It has become a standard on some new online investment platforms. "It's very in the weeds and technical," she said. "I have been in the industry for [a long time]. ... I've never had a woman ask me about tax-loss harvesting."
WIN is a forum for full-time MBA women from top business schools around the country and investment professionals from sponsoring firms to gather, network, hear perspectives on investment careers and related topics from industry representatives, learn from distinguished women and men in the industry; and showcase their stock-picking skills in front of judges from sponsoring firms and obtain feedback on their pitches.  More than 60 women MBA students from top business schools and 65 representatives from top-tier investment management firms are expected to attend.
Stash Financial, Inc. is a digital financial services company offering financial products for U.S. based consumers. Advisory products and services are offered through Stash Investments LLC, an SEC registered investment advisor. Stash Capital LLC, an SEC registered broker-dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, serves as introducing broker for Stash Clients’ advisory accounts.  Apex Clearing Corporation, a third-party SEC registered broker-dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, provides clearing and execution services and serves as qualified custodian for advisory assets of Stash Clients. Market Data by Xignite. For more information, see our disclosures.

You’ve heard the stats that there are more CEOs named John in the U.S. than there are women CEOs? You don’t want to fall behind the Johns where you work, and that’s what will happen if your company isn’t willing to invest in you. Fortunately, you’re now armed with lots of bragging points and a great sense of the market value of what you do, which will help you seek out the next great opportunity and negotiate your new offers like a pro.
1... biggest advice to any female looking to break into finance... drop the feminista thing, it won't get you anywhere. It's ok to be bitchy, and in fact may help you in certain instances, but don't ever, ever pull the feminist card. There's nothing worse than a person who chalks up their own personal failings to an "anti-me" thing. It's nothing more than an excuse for being a slacker.
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