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Self-esteem & financial engagement issues prevent women investing

11 December 2018

A lack of self-esteem and financial engagement is preventing women from investing to the same degree as men, according to new research from Kantar TNS.

Women between the ages of 21 and 53 hold £14.3 billion of investments, compared to a total of £29.3 billion among men of the same age.

Alice Moss, managing director for qualitative research at Kantar TNS, said the research found a “complex web of practical, emotional and unconscious barriers” is inhibiting women’s participation.

Moss commented: “We found there is a fundamental difference between women and men’s levels of self- esteem and financial autonomy.

“Women can feel embarrassed about their perceived lack of knowledge of the subject and talk about it less frequently with their peers; they also have less connection with the language and marketing used by financial organisations and have too many other priorities which push investing off their list.”

The research showed that men were more likely to say they have above average levels of self-esteem than their female counterparts, with men scoring 38% compared to women’s 20%. The trend continued across financial engagement, with only 26% of millennial women considering themselves to have a high level of financial engagement, compared with 55% of men.

Moss continued: “Women have more than 80% of the financial power over everyday spending, which makes this disconnect between financial services brands and the way that they are resonating with women something that the industry needs to address.

“We know that women with higher self-esteem show greater levels of financial autonomy.  In fact, moving women up just one confidence decile could be worth £12.4 billion for millennials and £24.4 billion for generation X females – so it’s surprising to see so many providers continuing to miss the mark.”

Moss said investment brands need to step out of their comfort zone and attempt to reach women in a new way, in what would not only boost women’s confidence but their own bottom line.

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