Yes, the markets have been a little rocky as of late, but at HerMoney we know that the best way to invest for our futures is to get invested and stay invested — you can’t time the markets. After all, we work hard — so shouldn’t our money work harder? As financial advisor Leesa Childress Sluder shares, being able to make important financial decisions opens up many doors and avenues, and it’s more important than ever that women are in the driver’s seat. Why? Take a look at these stats from the Family Wealth Advisors Council:
- In four of 10 American families, the woman is the breadwinner
- Nearly 95% of women will be their family’s primary decision-maker at some point.
- Women make up 48% of the country’s millionaires.
- An estimated $25 trillion (yep, trillion!) of wealth will go to women between now and 2030, thanks to generational and spousal transfers, meaning that ⅔ of the nation’s wealth will be controlled by women.
If you’re not invested yet, or if you need a little motivation to invest more, then check out what these female financial advisors have to say about investing:
Investing is the springboard to creating a life full of choices
Though money can’t buy happiness, it does make many aspects of day-to-day life easier. And, as Sluder shares, money allows women to make changes throughout their lifespan. By intentionally focusing on saving and investing goals, she says we give ourselves the ability to switch jobs or industries, care for kids or parents, take a year-long sabbatical to travel, or move abroad.
READ MORE: ETFs 101: What They Are And How To Invest
“It takes money to confidently go into a new life chapter, however with intentional investing it is all possible,” she explains. “Even if you start with putting the maximum amount into your 401k at work plus $200-300 per month into an investment account, the beauty of the math kicks in to build your account balance. I have observed that far too many women have abdicated their financial decisions and investing to men, and years later, are playing catch up both in terms of education and returns. Start today.”
We’re good at it
Female investors are nearly twice as likely as male investors to consider both rates of return and impact on their investment when making a decision, and we make more holistic decisions with our money. In the long-term, this approach makes us generally more successful. As Sluder explains, women put energy into the areas we care about deeply, and how we behave with money is a gauge that reflects these values.
“Just as women are carefully reading food labels and altering household purchases to keep their families healthy, we are also thinking through the impact of our money,” she continues. “Just as we read the ingredients in peanut butter or get locally grown food, we can also choose to invest in and support companies that use a triple bottom line philosophy. Consider what you would like to own as investments and make sure it matches you and your values. Your money makes a difference, and together our decisions can accelerate making the world a better place.”
A large bank account does not equal financial security
Raise your hand if having a lump sum of cash sitting pretty in a savings account makes you feel secure and protected. Having cash on hand is always a good idea, but when we don’t invest, we don’t give ourselves the opportunity to outperform inflation, according to Loreen Gilbert, the CEO and founder of WealthWise Financial Services. With low-interest rates in place for the foreseeable future, that cushy-looking account will lose purchasing power over time.
“One way that we help women investors move some of their liquid assets away from savings accounts is to use municipal bond portfolios for their move conservative assets. This can give a tax advantage by purchasing municipal bonds in their state as well as a higher potential return over time,” she explains. “By investing in the stock market, you can build wealth over time as well as have access to money if you need it. The volatility in the markets is what keeps many women away from the markets, but over the long-term, the upside volatility is greater than the downside volatility.”
For example, Gilbert had one client with hundreds of thousands of dollars in a basic account and a fully invested retirement savings. “We slowly weaned her from having that much in savings by moving smaller chunks of money into the market. After a few years, she was fully invested in a 60 percent equity and 40% fixed income split with both her retirement and liquid assets.
Many women are behind on their savings, even though we live longer than men.
We have more years on the earth, but fewer dollars in the bank, which is not a recipe for success. What gives? Financial advisor Wendy W. Murphy says one of the reasons could be that we do not feel comfortable with how to save, how much to save, or even how to invest. However, she says the great news is that as you seek to educate and empower yourself, there are resources to utilize, such as HerMoney podcasts and articles, financial planning and investing books, the business section of newspapers, and financial journals.
To give you an example, 20 years ago, Murphy and her husband read one of these books. “As we understood it, the thesis was that in order to achieve and retain wealth, we needed to live below our means, put our money where our values are, share that knowledge with our children, and raise them to become self-sufficient. And we needed to be intentional about how we save, spend, invest, borrow, and give,” she shares. “That has literally been the blueprint of our lives ever since. It has worked out well for us in terms of keeping us in sync with what money means to us. Money is simply a tool that allows us to live our lives with a sense of meaning and purpose.”
More from HerMoney:
- HerMoney Podcast Episode 303: Crypto 101
- HerMoney’s InvestingFixx
- A Beginner’s Guide To NFTs: What They Are, How To Invest, And More
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