International Women's Day: Research shows females are better long-term investors

Roisin Kelly-Goldsmith

Tuesday 08 March 2016

It’s International Women’s Day today, and the gender pay gap is still as relevant a topic as when the date of recognition for females first began in the early 1900s.

International Women's Day: Research shows females are better long-term investors

That’s because, as a Westpac report put it yesterday, Australian women face an earnings gap of $123.4 billion a year. This figure not only means ladies face retirement with a smaller nest egg, but their superannuation gets stretched more than men’s because they are more likely to outlive them. 

Ainslie van Onselen, Westpac Director of Women's Markets, Inclusion and Diversity said in the report that women face plenty of financial challenges across their working life.

"We need to take every opportunity to have a consistent dialogue with business leaders, government, community and our families about the role we all need to play to bridge this gap. We've got the numbers; we see the opportunity, now let's start to accelerate the outcome.”

One opportunity women have to maximise their earnings without waiting on business leaders however is through investing, as one Australian financial provider has found.

Stockspot analysed its client data to see if there were any gender traits or discrepancies among clients in their rates of return. And as it turned out, Stockspot’s female clients were better long-term investors, with 44% saying they would stick to their investment plan if markets fell, compared to 31% among men.

CEO Chris Brycki put Stockspot’s overall findings down to three marked investing traits among women:

1. Women balance lower returns to avoid risk

2. Women invest carefully, and

3. They stick to a plan

However, Brycki thinks that investing is not gender biased and both sexes could learn from each other’s strong investing traits. For example, “men can learn from the discipline women have in not being tempted to change course, whereas women can take some investing confidence from men,” he said.

“Ultimately it’s about having the right mix of investments based on your investment horizon and personal profile.”

Tips for women to take their investing to the next level and secure a better future:

  • Investing doesn’t have to stop when child rearing comes into the equation. If you commit to long-term shares, the higher likelihood of return will increase your chances of retiring comfortably.

  • Diversify your investments to minimise risk and keep stress at bay. It’s okay to have confidence as an investor, but putting all your eggs in the one basket if you have less money to play with could see you lose more than you can afford to.

  • If you’re a woman nearing the age of retirement, consider the term deposit route as part of your portfolio. Say you are planning on retiring in two years and have $20,000 in savings separate to the money sitting with your superannuation fund. The simple step of stashing those funds into the Mozo Experts Choice winner, Me Bank’s Term Deposit account with an interest rate of 3% will see your money grow by $1,200 in two years. On the other hand, if you are going to retire in 5 years, if you use the same term deposit account with a slightly higher interest rate of 3.2%, your $20,000 will increase to $23,200 by the time you retire.

Do you want to try some term deposit calculations of you own and see how much your money could grow? Choose a term deposit account from the list here, then use the Mozo term deposit calculator to get the figures.

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