Saturday, March 12, 2011

Busting 5 myths about women and money

When it comes to money, our society fosters a lot of silly stereotypes. One successful businesswoman helps us dismantle some of them.

1. Women aren't good at business. Maybe this stereotype is a holdover from when female faces in the office belonged to secretaries and phone operators -- you know, 60 years ago.

According to small business advice group, women account "for more than 1/3 of all people involved in entrepreneurial activity," and the number of women-owned businesses is growing at twice the rate of all businesses. Also, according to the National Restaurant Association, women own about half of American restaurants.

2. Women can't invest well. "Women will ask more questions," Nolan-Ryan said. "It's all right if I don't know the answer -- I'll get the best information. You have to leave your ego at the door when it comes to investing." Investment management company Vanguard backs her up: They found that women save more, trade less, and diversify better. Why? "Economists suggest that men tend to overestimate their investing abilities," says Vanguard.

3. Women spend more than men. While women and shopping has been the fodder of countless jokes, the notion that women spend more money than men is simply not true. Nolan-Ryan says, "I think it's proven that single men spend more money on food and toys than women do." She's right: Single men are the biggest spenders. According to, single men spend 18% more than single women. They also carry slightly more credit card debt.

Men are just as likely as women to make impulse buys, but for some reason the stereotype sticks to women. Sure, they do spend a lot of money as managers of the household, which is why so much advertising targets them.

4. Women make the same as men. This one's unfortunately not true. According to a recently released study from the White House called Women in America (.pdf file), the average woman's income is only 75% of the average man's. (This doesn't mean, however, that women are necessarily paid less for the same job -- see this recent story from Stacy.)

Why do women bring home less? Nolan-Ryan says, "I don't think money is what always motivates women. It's the passion and the love for what we're doing, and who we're doing it for -- often, the family."

5. Women are too emotional to manage money effectively. A survey from PNC indicates men are more likely to take more risks on investments than women, and more likely to act impulsively. Also, men are more likely to strive for money for money's sake, while wealth is less of a measure of success to women.

Source: msn news


Nava.K said...

Have to agree on one point for sure - women are for sure more emotional than men and very sensitive. But in women in business - they can be as successful as men.

Philip Khor said...

Previously I would have agreed with 3 and 4. but interesting post btw.

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