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Why Women Must Become Investors

6 reasons why women need to take charge of their money

A young journalist approached me a while back and said quite passionately, “We have to make women aware that they have to take charge of their money. They cannot depend on someone else to do it for them!”

After talking with her, I learned her passion was personal. Her 54-year old mother recently divorced and was basically left with nothing and had to move in with her daughter. It was a wake up call for this young woman.

This situation is not unique. Most women are not prepared to financially thrive on their own. But times have changed, and it is not enough to rely on others—a man, family, or a business or government—to take care of us.

Here are six sound reasons why women need to get into the game of investing.

#1: The statistics

The statistics about women and money are startling. In the US:

· 47 percent of women over the age of 50 are single

· Women have lower retirement income because they are away from work 14.7 years as compared to 1.6 years for men

· 50 percent of marriages end in divorce (and women usually end up with the kids)

· After divorce, a woman’s standard of living drops an average of 73%

· As of 2000, women are expected to live an average of 7 to 10 years longer than men

· The average woman born between 1948 and 1964 may likely remain in the workforce until at least 74 years of age due to inadequate savings and pension coverage

· 3 out of 4 elderly living in poverty are women (80 percent were not poor when their husbands were alive)

· 90 percent of women will have sole responsibility for their finances within their lifetime, yet 79 percent have not planned for this

· 58 percent of female baby boomers have less than $10,000 in retirement

· It’s estimated that only 20 percent of baby boomer women will be financially secure in their retirement

More and more women, especially as they become older, are not educated or prepared to take care of themselves financially.

#2: Avoiding dependency

You don’t go into a marriage expecting a divorce. You don’t begin a new job expecting to be laid off. But it happens, and today with more and more frequency. I’ve said this before, but, women, if you are depending on a husband, a boss, or anyone else for your financial future, think twice. They simply may not be there. Too often we may not even realize just how dependent we are until we’re faced with our own personal wake-up call.

Learning to invest allows you to depend on yourself, not on others, for your financial well-being.

#3: No glass ceiling

In the world of investing, the markets don’t care if you’re female or male, black or white, a college grad or a high school dropout. The markets only care about how smart you are with your money. The key is education and experience. The smarter you are with your investment choices, the greater your success as an investor. There are no limits, no ceilings, glass or otherwise, for women in the world of investing.

#4: No limits on income

We may not like it, but there is still a glass ceiling and wage inequality in the work world for women, and because of this a woman is often limited in the amount of income she can make as an employee. In the investment world, you are completely responsible for and in control of the amount of money you make.

#5: Increased self-esteem

Personally, I think this is one of the greatest benefits to women investors. It’s not unusual to have your self-esteem linked to your ability to provide for yourself. I’ve seen women’s self-esteem soar once they know how to make it on their own financially. And when a woman’s self-esteem rises, then relationships around her tend to improve, her life improves overall, and she feels good about herself. Increased confidence leads to higher self-esteem. Higher self-esteem leads to greater success. And greater success leads to financial freedom.

#6: Control of your time

As an investor you are in control of your time. Investing is something you can do part time or full time. It is something you can do from home, from the office, or from anywhere. It is also something into which you can include your children. Many mothers have told me they take their children to look at properties or potential business investments. And a big plus is that when you include your children in the investment process you are actually teaching them to be investors as well.

These six reasons support why women and investing go hand-in-hand. Today, investing is no longer just a good idea for women. It is a must-have. Start your investment journey today.

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