In this the first articles in our #loveyourmoney series we look at why women are less likely to put their money into stocks and shares than men. This would be easier to answer fifty years ago when gender roles were more specialised but in Britain today, a significant percentage of households have a woman as the main bread winner. An even higher percentage of women are responsible for household budgeting, paying the bills and finding a better deal on an energy provider. Yet investment in the stock market remains a comparative blind spot.
The idea that it is highly complex won’t wash. Women have no trouble becoming buy-to-let investors in the property market, which involves taking on debt, managing tenants and filing tax returns. This is far more complicated than investing in a stocks and shares ISA. Perhaps the answer is psychological.
Many find the world of investment ‘untrustworthy’ or ‘unsafe’, others may find it ‘male-dominated and patronising’; another beef is that decision making is made virtually impossible by too much information and impenetrable jargon.
Indeed with investment there is indeed too much choice. If you are of a disposition of wanting to be thorough and want to understand every option, you can end up completely overwhelmed. So, the default option is to plum for certainty of outcome which is why women often opt for a cash ISA rather than the stocks and shares version.
It is also probably true that women are more likely to invest with their children in mind. It is human nature to be more cautious with your finances if you have someone else is involved.
Whatever the reason women are missing out on a significant material benefit.
Part 1 – Are you Scared of the Stock Market?
Part 2 – Making Your Money Work for You
Part 3 – A Brief Guide to the Two Faces of Debt
Part 4 – Are you Ready for the Stock Market?
Part 5 – Three-Point Plan for the Investors New to the Stock Market
Part 6 – Should I Consolidate my Pensions?