By Hena Mehta
Women are naturals at investing. So why don’t more of us do it more often? Despite having worked in financial services for nearly a decade years, I’m still surprised that not only are there fewer women fund managers, but also women investors.
That’s odd because study after study proves that women could teach men a few things when it comes to investing
If you need more persuading, look up the book ‘Warren Buffett Invests Like A Girl’. If the world’s foremost investor is channelling his feminine side to make billions of dollars, what’s stopping us?
If you’ve been toying with the idea of investing, here’s why you might already have what it takes to succeed:
1) Women look at the bigger picture: When it comes to financial planning, women are in it for the long haul.
We opt for long-term investments rather than rely on stock market trends and hot stock tips. We’re not easily fazed when markets are volatile and don’t sell as a knee-jerk reaction.
Rather we believe that slow and steady earn big gains.
2) We’re less likely to gamble: Women are more cautious and skip unnecessary risks. As a result, we’re less likely to lose a large amount of money over an impulsive transaction.
We also prefer to invest in different types of investment products and have more balanced (risk and return) investment portfolios that consist of equities, mutual funds and fixed income securities.
Despite being fewer in number, women fund managers are as successful as their male counterparts.
3) We’re less impulsive and emotional: That’s right, ladies! It turns out that men often invest for the thrill and the risk, while we women invest to increase our financial security. Think retirement planning and saving up for our child’s education.
Studies have also found that we’re better under pressure and less influenced by the highs and lows of the stock market.
While men are likely to sell when a stock crashes, women are patient and therefore enjoy more significant gains on the same stock in the long run.
4) We take research seriously: Women have an eye for detail, so it’s no surprise that like Buffett, we’re are more likely to research every company in-depth before investing our money.
We’ll pore over news articles, annual reports and even the history of a company’s management team in the run-up to investing.
Instead of parking our savings in a trendy new company, we’re more likely to pick the brands we use often and can relate to.
Women prefer to buy shares in companies we’re familiar with.
It’s not just our approach to investing that’s different; the needs that drive our investments are too.
Take the pay gap, for example. Since we’re paid less for the same job, our money has to work that much harder.
Retirement is another aspect worth considering. Statistically, women have a longer life span than men, which means greater expenditure.
While women now have a higher disposable income, we’re still playing by the rules of a system that’s been primarily designed and dominated by men.
These were the flints that sparked Basis, an online platform that powers personal finance for women.
By focusing on women as emerging investors, we provide innovative investment solutions that help them take charge of their finances.
And if Buffett’s example is anything to go by, we women have a lot to look forward to.
(The author is founder and CEO at Basis, a first-of-its-kind platform to make personal finance and investing simple, accessible and inclusive for all women)