I heard an interesting story on NPR about women and investing the other day. The points which jumped out at me were:
- Women are more risk-averse when it comes to investing, and testosterone plays a part in the gender difference;
- Fear of an impoverished old age -- women generally have more time as senior citizens -- adds a layer of paralysis which amplifies the hormonal factors;
- In heteronormative relationships, women are more likely to let the man control the money, even women who are the primary wage earners; and
- When they invest for themselves, women tend to be better at it than men.
More than a decade into the 21st century, we haven't reached gender parity in how we relate to money. How much of that difference is cultural and how much is biological isn't clear to me, but differences there certainly are.
Whatever the reasons, each of us have different strengths. Gender is one way to describe those differences, but what's important is to recognize that we can support one another in saving for the future (which can include investing). Some of the ways I have touched upon in the past, such as Pagan investment clubs and community savings groups are more likely to be successful the old-fashioned way, face to face. Groups of people working together can shore up weaknesses and amplify strengths.