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 […]
The WIN conference provided us with direct access to the HR representatives and industry leaders from top buy-side companies and a platform to showcase our stock pitch skills and receive constructive feedback. It was well worth spending the two days in Boston to explore opportunities in the investment management industry. You may also be invited to some exclusive networking events from those companies while you were at Boston or after the conference.
But just having a big shiny goal doesn’t qualify you to open an investment account just yet. After all, if the only thing you needed to have in order to start investing was the desire to have more money, then a lot more people would have investment accounts. (According to the LearnVest and Chase Blueprint study, just 28% of women do, and 40% of men.)
An increasing number of women are having children later in life, having spent their younger years establishing careers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2015, birth rates declined for women in their 20s but increased for women in their 30s and early 40s.4 I personally had my son in my 30s, which meant my husband and I had to save for his college and our own retirement simultaneously. For those of us who had children on the later side, how many of us really thought about saving for retirement early in our careers? Yet we were likely more able to afford to save before we had families to provide for.
One senior woman at a European bank argued that the push to promote more women is itself problematic. "The senior men have now got a cover for promoting the younger women who flirt with them," she said. "They know they have to promote X number of women each year, so they look around and they promote the women who kiss up to them most instead of the women who are the most competent. It's the same as the old boys' network, with flirtation instead of familiarity."
MS. SPELLINGS: Absolutely. Well, to set the table, and probably a lot of people in this room know this, but you know, this city, and Raleigh not, is the worst in the United States of America for economic mobility. Raleigh is a tiny bit better, but not much. And so, the gaps are wide here in North Carolina. Here's the good news about that, is because likewise Wake County and Mecklenburg County are some of the highest educated counties in the nation with, you know, 50% higher education attainment with a statewide average in the low 40s. And so, the gaps are very, very wide, and I think, you know, people used to ask me this all the time, if I could wave a magic wand I would start with higher expectations of our children, all of our children, rural children, black children, brown children, poor children. You know? If half the school lunches served today in school cafeterias were tainted and people got sick we would be outraged, it would lead the news today here in this community or nationally. Half of the kids, poor kids getting out of high school nobody seems to, that doesn't matter that much because that's our expectation that it's okay that those children are left behind, to use an old-fashioned parlance that you might have heard before.
When users sign up for Stash, they’re asked whether they identify as low, medium, or high risk when it comes to investing their money. Among the sample group, nearly 90% of female Stash users identified a low or medium risk tolerance when they opened their account, as compared to 75% of men. “This means that female Stash users perceive themselves as less willing to make riskier investments, opting for less volatile stocks and ETFs—they want safer investments, in other words,” Alexandra Phelan, the Stash data scientist who led this study, tells Quartz.
But rather than pitch men and women and their typical respective styles against each other, we might look to the success of diverse teams across the business world for a far more productive use of this information. A widely circulated study undertaken by McKinsey & Company found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on their executive teams were 21 percent more likely to experience above-average profitability. And in February this year, it was discovered that funds managed by mixed gender teams attracted 6 percent more inflows than those run solely by men or women over three years. Diversity, it’s clear, is good for business.
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MS. CRONSTEDT: So, I, a year after participating in the program, sold my first business and simultaneously, I started a new one based on the knowledge and the tools that were given to me in the Global Ambassadors Program, which was a more successful company, just in short. Which was an online catering company that exists to this day, and that has--
MS. SARR: For me, it's funny because the most, the most impactful mentor I ever had was an American gentleman by the name of David from Texas, had he's been my biggest supporter, and he died in a plane crash in Texas two years ago, but he's been following me and even sometimes when I didn't believe in myself he gave me huge responsibilities as a CFO of a multi-million-dollar business. That was way before I joined the World Bank or the UN. But so, mentoring is extremely important. So, my ask tonight is for the men to really be our champions. We want them to be our he for she and say to other men I stand by my sister, I stand by my wife, I stand by my daughter. That's my first ask. My second ask is for the other women, you know, we tend to shy away sometimes from the activism but you just have to realize that you have a mandate. If every woman voted for a woman we will have plenty of women presidents around the world. So, you really, you really have a mandate to represent and to know that you are really, when you're sitting on that board meeting, when you're about to make, click that button that you're doing that on behalf of millions and billions of women around the world. They say that if every woman made a jump today we will have an earthquake. So, that's how powerful we are.
“The GWI program is one of the programs that the institute is implementing to make more female students aware of the careers in investment management,” Mary Scott, associate director of the Notre Dame Institute for Global Investing (NDIGI), said of the program. “As we broaden awareness of how intellectually stimulating and rewarding these types of careers can be, our hope is that more females will be interested in pursuing this industry.”
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No. In your early 20s, you’re just happy to have a job. I loved the markets and the trading floor atmosphere. As you get more senior, the pay disparity, the accounts being unequally distributed becomes more apparent. It bothered me. The little frat boy jokes stuff was a constant drumbeat. It didn’t get to me that much. As I got into my 30s, I was bothered more by seeing young women come who were talented and leave because of the environment.
Investing is not some get-rich-quick scheme and there is always a degree of risk. But those women who are comfortable with that risk should not be deterred by the aggressive macho investor stereotype. The proof of the increasing success of women in the world of investing can be seen in the female-focused investment firms that have sprung up. As Alexander Taussig, the senior vice president for women investors at Fidelity, has said, "The myth that men are better investors is just that -- a myth."