Life expectancy is one of the many unpredictable variables at play. My mother-in-law just turned 100 – amazing! She never expected to live that long, and even if she did, how could she or anyone else effectively plan for the income needed to last all of those years? Meanwhile, my husband's sister passed away unexpectedly in her early 60s – a reminder that trying to anticipate our own mortality based on that of our immediate family members is pretty much futile.
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Like Olivia Ott’s, my perception of asset management and finance is not an extremely positive one. Although I really like economics and do consider going into finance, I feel like it is still a male-dominated industry. Sheryl Sandberg says that we women have to “lean in” in the workplace, but that is easier said than done. Even in school, I feel uneasy to speak up in a class dominated by boys, imagine the same scenario, but in the workplace!
Consider a male slugger who puts $1,000 each into two speculative stocks versus a female lead-off hitter who invests the same amount in two dividend-paying blue-chip stocks. The high-quality stocks each return 10% over the course of the year, leaving the female investor with $2,200. Meanwhile, the male investor hits a home run with one of his picks, which doubles, but strikes out with the other, which loses 90% of its value. His total after a year is $2,100.