Today, gender equality is in the spotlight like never before. The #MeToo movement has encouraged countless women to share their stories about being harassed at work—myself included. Powerful men have lost their power, while powerful women (hi, Oprah) are putting their platforms and their money into stopping workplace harassment and abuse. It’s been incredible. And it’s just the beginning.
"As more women invest, we will demonstrate through a show of force that we believe in each other enough to invest in each other — whether we can invest $1 or millions. We will do this by choosing investments that advance women and help improve our world. We will commit 25% of our investment portfolios to “impact investments” by 2025." — Let’s Disrupt Money
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.
By Mansi Gupta, Design Specialist, Women’s World Banking  “If a hospital isn’t involved, I’m healthy enough.” Women’s World Banking spoke with women in India to better understand their views on health, health emergencies and the role of insurance. By understanding their attitudes on health issues, Women’s World Banking will work to increase uptake and usage […]
My days are pretty unpredictable—unless I’ve got early morning calls or meetings or a ton of work to do urgently, I’ll usually get into work around 10am and could leave anywhere between 8pm to past midnight. There have been several times where I’ve woken up to tons of emails that need to be addressed immediately, so I’ll log in from home and keep working until I get to a stopping point where I can transition to the office. Best parts of my day are when the client acknowledges how helpful our work has been. Worst parts would be the really late nights and days when you’re just stretched way too thin across multiple teams.
Says Bourke, “In the first part of 2014, we completed four oil and gas deals totaling $350 million. We found, even in the heart of the oil patch, traditionally known as a male dominated industry, it is more the exception than the rule that both the decision to sell as well as the selection of the most appropriate buyer was a joint decision involving a central female stakeholder. It makes business sense to direct deliberate attention to building an investment banking firm that leverages the talent and experience of the female workforce.”
That’s why it’s important for women to invest in companies that support other women. One example? Pax Ellevate Global Women’s Index Fund (PXWEX). It’s a mutual fund with Sallie Krawcheck, the leader of women’s digital financial advisor Ellevest, serving as chair. Here’s the scoop: It rates companies based on how well they advance gender diversity—like how many women serve on the board or as executive managers—and puts your money towards the ones that come out on top. It’s based on global research that shows having more women at the helm can increase return and lower costs, says Blayney. As for the results? The fund outperformed the MSCI World Index for the three-year period ending September 30, 2017. 
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?
MS. HAILE: For me, I believe for me, for each of our countries we have to contribute and we have to give back, and I mean nobody will come to us to do our businesses. So, for us we're so happy we're establishing such an amazing bank. We have left a legacy. So, the next generation will aspire more, doing better for the continent, for generations to come. So, it's good to serve as role models.
Persist even when it seems like the investing isn't for you. Krawcheck and others have long observed that the male-dominated investment industry isn't particularly welcoming to women. Only about 3 in 10 financial advisors is a woman. For instance, women are thought to be more goal-oriented around the idea of taking care of loved ones and see themselves as savers rather than investors. But the investment industry often focuses its marketing on the idea of returns. In another example, investment company marketing often focuses on what the investment company provides rather than what the client needs.
The organization maintains that women investment managers in the U.S. in the $15 trillion mutual fund marketplace have fallen from 10% of the industry in 2009 to less than 7% today. In alternative asset classes, women represent 6% in private equity, 4% in real estate and 3% in hedge funds. The pipeline of young women moving into these types of careers is not promising, in part because they don’t understand the industry and they don’t have available role models.
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.
Once you meet all these requirements, you can open your own investment accounts. If you fit that bill, then check out our Investing 101 guide to get more details on how investing works. Then, head over to our checklist that will give you the steps to opening an investment account. And, if you know you’re ready, there’s no better place to start than our Start Investing Bootcamp. 
Before she invests in a stock, Persaud asks a series of questions: Is the company well established, and does it have clear competitive advantages? Is it profitable and capable of generating enough cash to pay a healthy dividend? Can you buy the shares for a reasonable price? Affirmative answers to all of those questions are likely to result in investments that provide competitive returns with a minimum of volatility.
MS. TURLINGTON BURNS: Gosh, so many ways. We are pretty small. We're a 12-person organization. I think we struggle with anything that any small business would struggle with, just growing and trying to do what we do well, not waste resources, make sure that our people are taken care of and people feel, you know, like motivated and looked after to do their job to the best of their ability. We look for, you know, volunteers in different ways. Our organization was essentially all volunteers before they came on full time. And so, I don't know if we can continue to take on volunteers and make them part of the staff, but it's a really important thing to be able to have an open door for people who have time or who have skills to offer, and you know, we've had pro bono legal advice, we've had graphic designers and artists and different people come in and say I can do this, I can't do that but I can do this. And so, we want to have that relationship where nothing is, nothing is overlooked, nothing is less important than writing a check, although that's always welcome. It's Mother's Day and that's a big opportunity for us to campaign around maternal health. We have, you know, partners, like product partnerships where we have lots of really lovely things that are all kind of, you know, a play on classic Mother's Day gifts, but we have great partnerships with mother-owned, female-led businesses where they're creating products that then, you know, people can buy and they can celebrate their mother, but they can also help save a life of someone else at the same time. So, those kinds of things are also great ways to participate.
Wells Fargo Advisors is registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority but is not licensed or registered with any financial services regulatory authority outside of the U.S. Non-U.S. residents who maintain U.S.-based financial services accounts with Wells Fargo Advisors may not be afforded certain protections conferred by legislation and regulations in their country of residence in respect to any investments, investment transactions, or communications made with Wells Fargo Advisors.
6. Impact of higher savings is calculated using fixed monthly returns with contributions made at the beginning of the period. Beginning balances are assumed to be zero. The potential difference is calculated by comparing ending balances at retirement for each hypothetical example. The ending values do not reflect taxes, fees or inflation. If they did, amounts would be lower. Earnings and pre-tax contributions are subject to taxes when withdrawn. Distributions before age 59 1/2 may also be subject to a 10% penalty. Contribution amounts are subject to IRS and Plan limits. Systematic investing does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss in a declining market. This example is for illustrative purposes only and does not represent the performance of any security. Consider your current and anticipated investment horizon when making an investment decision, as the illustration may not reflect this. The assumed rate of return used in this example is not guaranteed. Investments that have potential for the assumed annual rate of return also come with risk of loss.
Disclaimer: References from this Web site or from any of the information services sponsored by WISER/National Resource Center to any entity, product, service or information does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by WISER/National Resource Center or any of its employees. WISER/National Resource Center is not responsible for the contents of any 'off-site' Web pages references from this server. Although our page includes links to sites including or referencing good collections of information, WISER/National Resource Center does not endorse ANY specific products or services provided by public or private organizations.

While a nice portfolio of stocks is bliss, having financial independence is way bigger than picking the right stock, fund or financial advisor. It’s about living in a way that supports your financial goals, having the confidence and knowledge to grow your money (alone or with a well chosen financial advisor), and creating income streams using either your highest skills, your money, or both to fund the lifestyle you desire.


Disclaimer: References from this Web site or from any of the information services sponsored by WISER/National Resource Center to any entity, product, service or information does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by WISER/National Resource Center or any of its employees. WISER/National Resource Center is not responsible for the contents of any 'off-site' Web pages references from this server. Although our page includes links to sites including or referencing good collections of information, WISER/National Resource Center does not endorse ANY specific products or services provided by public or private organizations.
In recent weeks, Knowledge@Wharton High School began noticing young women on the Wharton campus in Philadelphia, Pa., U.S., who were wearing hats and carrying bags inscribed with three simple words: Girls Who Invest. Since we happen to know lots of girls with this interest – thousands from around the world have participated in our annual KWHS Investment Competition for high school students – we decided to look further into this intriguing GWI sorority. Who were they? Why were they here? And were they truly stock market devotees?
MS. SPELLINGS: --moderator here. Melanne, the table could be turned on this easily and Melanne and I have worked together for many, many years on these issues with President Clinton, President Bush, President Obama, Michelle Obama, Laura Bush, and on and on and on. And I think that's, as I've listened to Christy and thought about the qualities that we try to engender as women leaders, patience, working with others, listening, being goal oriented, understanding it's for the long-haul, being touched by something personal as Christy was often related to children and women and vulnerable populations. I mean all of those things really are at our core beliefs—as women.

"Taking just one step can break the inertia holding many women back," said Taussig. "Whether you're just getting started building a plan, looking to become more active in managing you investments, or determining how to make your savings last through retirement, commit to following through with one new step toward that goal. In most cases, you'll find you're off and running. And there is no shortage of resources to help."


Many women reserved their ire for the "F" word: family. Male bankers with families are feted as breadwinners, said one. "There's still the assumption - often made by senior bankers with stay at home wives -  that a woman's income is the secondary income," she said. In reality, this often isn't the case: "Almost all the senior women I know in finance have househusbands, but they're not going to broadcast that fact."
The lesson, says Ramona Persaud, manager of Fidelity Global Equity Income Fund (FGILX), is that it’s important to manage risk and avoid huge losses. If you invest in individual stocks, says Persaud, look for strong companies that are willing and able to pay generous dividends. “Your investment return is a combination of dividends and price appreciation,” she says. “If you have enough dividend yield, it dampens the downside.”

Given how un-fun paying taxes is, you can imagine that everyone would store all their extra money in retirement accounts if they could. But of course, the government doesn’t allow that. It limits the amount of money you can put in retirement accounts. For instance, in 2012, you can only contribute $17,000 to a 401(k) or 403(b) account (though that will be bumped up to $17,500 for 2013). Similarly, you can only put $5,000 into an IRA in 2012 (and $5,500 in 2013).
JPMorgan, for instance, holds ‘Winning Women’ events which offer networking opportunities and guidance for prospective female investment bankers. Morgan Stanley has several diversity initiatives, including a leadership program for newly promoted female managing directors, a six-month leadership program for women vice presidents, as well as a women’s business exchange within the bank’s wealth management unit. On the more practical side, Goldman Sachs for example is accommodating mothers with on-site child care at its New York and New Jersey offices, as well as on-site lactation rooms.
MS. HAILE: We finance startups, again small and medium enterprises, also expand businesses. So, most of them are involved in agriculture, manufacturing, export/import, transport, communications, etcetera. Coming to the size of the loans, we have two loans, which we do like any other conventional commercial bank. We give loans because the bank is for both women and men because we don't exclude me, even though the bank is for women. Quite a good number of women are banking honestly with us because they love our objectives and what we're doing. So, in this respect the government of Ethiopia has set its own policy on collateral requirements, which is 100% plus. But for us, we have eased the collateral for women for this conventional part of the loan from 51 to 70. So, in this process out of, you know, we're a young bank, it's only three years, so out of the 942 borrowers 309, 33% are women, which we are very glad because we have waived that from 100% plus to 51 to 70. So, the loan size on average is 1.8 million U.S. dollars. Again, we have another loan, which we call the risk fund, the grantee fund, which voluntarily we have set aside a certain amount of money for those small and medium enterprises, mainly growth-oriented businesses, who need money but they don't have the collateral. So, this is the side of the loan which we provide, and so far we were able to give 610 businesses, women's businesses in this part of the loan. We have thousands of women on the line on that because of the problem of collateral. But lucky we were, a few months back we were able to sign grant fund from U.S. - - ten million U.S. dollars from the grantee fund. You know, when you improve working everybody comes to support you. So, now we are now ready to expand our loan on the risk fund side again, also working more on the conventional part.

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.
Women live, on average, five to seven years longer than men (depending on when they were born). Their money has to stretch longer, and if they are married, it is important to note that some of the biggest health care costs are incurred in the year prior to death, so if they survive their husbands, it is possible that their financial resources may be reduced by medical expenses. Married women tend to suffer significant losses in income when their spouse dies.
The result is an investment gap. Fewer women take part in the financial market, and that hurts women’s total wealth over time, thereby exacerbating the gender wealth gap. It’s a vicious, sexist financial cycle. “If women earn less and don’t invest those earnings, the gap gets bigger and bigger,” Morrison says. But as Morrison proves, it doesn’t have to be this way.
If conditions out in the job market seem great, then plan for your next steps—polish up your resume and cover letter, make sure your interview clothes still fit, and get out there! However, if you’re seeing some warning signs that right now might not be the best time to jump ship, then bide your time and plan accordingly. Don’t forget, you can do some subtle and covert planning for your next job while you’re at your current one so when the iron is hot you’ll be prepared to strike!
Do what you can to learn about investing now, because estimates show that women control 51 percent of wealth in the U.S. and are projected to control two-thirds by 2020, according to a Fidelity study. Yet women are more likely to say that "lack of investing knowledge or experience" and "too much information, or complexity of investing" are reasons they feel less confident, according to a Capital One investing survey. Consider taking an online investing course, downloading a podcast or wading through a book. (Warren Buffett's favorite is "The Intelligent Investor.")
This plays out in a number of different ways, explains Bast. “Some women save for their children’s college education before their own retirements. Others give generously to loved ones today, helping them to buy cars, houses and other large-ticket items.” However, Bast warns that there may be a high price to putting short-term needs in front of long-term goals.
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.
MS. URZAIZ: I'll say four words: More women in power. I think we need more women, whether it's holding public office, whether it's in business, whether it's, the person I'm trying to make a decision at Lowe's to whether to buy my hammocks or not. Just those decisions where it's just decision-making positions we need more women because women relate better to other women. No offense to the men here, but it's easier to make that connection, to know that they have our agenda at first when they make those decisions for policy, for so many things. Just more women in power I think is what will get us to the next level. So many policies have been put in place, but now we need women making those decisions and driving those decisions.
Things will only change if senior male bankers start promoting women on the basis of their competency, said senior female banker on Wall Street. "Women lose the will to fight against the tide and get tired of putting in the hours and sacrificing family time." But women also need to ask for what they deserve: "I believe I am paid equal to men in the past few roles I have had, but that is because I have been proactive in finding out how much my peers make, and demanded that I be paid the same, if not more," she concluded.

The risk/reward tradeoff is also a factor, as taking a greater level of risk tends to result in greater rewards. Here again, few would argue the point. Clearly, investing in stocks is likely to lead to greater long-term returns than investing in bonds, investing in bonds is likely to yield greater returns than putting the money in a bank account, and putting money a bank account is likely to deliver a better result than putting it under your pillow.
7. Plan for retirement. You should prepare for that time when you will no longer be working and collecting a regular paycheck. Keep in mind that the earlier you start, the longer the money can benefit from compounding. So if you don’t have a retirement fund already in place (for example, a 401(k) or an IRA), start one immediately. Read 401(k) Basics and 10 IRA Strategies to get started.
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.
Through its website, TFS connects students to more than 7 million scholarships representing more than $41 billion in aid. Continual increases in tuition fees and other college expenses are critical issues impacting students and families across the United States – particularly those who can’t afford to finance higher education on their own. According to the College Board’s 2016 Trends in College Planning, the average published tuition and fee price in the private nonprofit four-year sector is about 2.3 times higher than it was in 1986-87, after adjusting for inflation. It is 3.1 times higher in the public four-year sector and 2.4 times higher in the public two-year sector. As a result of these trends, an increasing number of students must rely on scholarships to attend college or graduate school.
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 […]
Conventional wisdom “blames” women for this gap. We receive messages that we’re not as good at math as men; we’re not as good at investing. Um, no. Studies have found that once women do invest, they outperform men by nearly one percentage point a year. This was confirmed recently by Fidelity, which analyzed the performance of 8 million retail clients in 2016. Typically women outperform because they don’t overtrade, panic in down markets, or pay too much in fees.
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