Only a third (33%) of women see themselves as investors, much lower than their male counterparts (41%). This sentiment of investment being a man’s world is true in every market Fidelity looked at, bar China.

Fifty-five per cent of women told Fidelity they look after the daily and monthly income and outgoings for their households.

How the pandemic effected women’s finances

Three in ten (29%) women told Fidelity that their personal income has reduced as a result of the pandemic. However, this was a similar percentage to the number of men, where we see the difference is in women’s ability to save. Thirty-one per cent of women have seen the amount of money they’ve been able to save in the last 12 months decrease, in comparison to 26% of men. This trend is true across every market surveyed. This drop in savings is not just a concern for now, it also raises questions about the future. Nearly one in five women (18%) has reduced the amount of money she is saving into a pension as a direct result of the pandemic.

Why is women’s finance so important and how can we help each other?

Women and their finances, are critical more than ever. Women’s economic empowerment boosts productivity, increases economic diversification and income equality in addition to other positive development outcomes. So what can be done to enable women and their finances?

We can make small changes in our homes and in our schools. Showing young girls that they future isn’t lower paid work, having to take career gaps to care for others or taking any job they can. We can show examples of women who have already changed the paradigm.

Everyone of us can ask the question “how am I and those around us empowering others”.

But where do we start? We can’t just rant and preach to people. Often people are in very different places or stages of life. They may not be ready to hear what needs to be said. Equally many won’t feel they are able to do anything about it.

Reading and listening to podcast, then sharing them to others. Sharing the message. Sharing your own journey. Share your learnings. Share your story. You will be amazed how many are in the same ocean, just maybe a different boat, but still at sea, learning and growing.

Where should women start when trying to get on top of their finances

For many women and their finances, they don’t know where to start. Do I save or invest? Do I overpay my mortgage or invest? What do I do when having a career break? I am over spending, how do I stop? How do I save more? What protection do I need? Do I have enough? What do I do with all these old pensions?

Let’s take investing as an example, just start investing, start with small amounts. This will bring up many questions. Where is the initial one of course, but, how much, what find of investment, a fund, what kind of fund, which kind of provider, is my money safe, what are the costs, how much should I invest, what will that achieve, will that be enough? And this is just for starters.

How do you know where to start? One step at time… yes many of these are linked, but finances should be done in phases. Being overwhelmed causes procrastination. This won’t allow you to progress, you find yourself in the same position year after year.

Women need to take responsibility and start prioritising their finances NOW

Pick an area you really need to priorities. Focus on that. Get the help you need. Read up. Search books and podcast for inspiration. Set a date for the decision you have made and tell someone about it, make yourself accountable.

Of course, for your independent financial advice needs, get in touch.

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