David Lerner Associates: The Crisis in Women’s Financial Literacy
The word “crisis” seems to be used very loosely today, but it might be the right word when it comes to the current state of financial literacy among U.S. adults.
According to some recently published studies, there appears to be a relatively low level of financial literacy among many Americans today. Based on these studies, the financial literacy of women appears to be even lower than that of men.
One of these studies was performed by Financial Finesse, a financial education company that conducts research on financial trends. In this study, Financial Finesse determined that there is a “gender gap” between men and women when it comes to financial literacy. Participants in the study were asked to answer a series of questions grouped according to these seven key financial planning areas:
- Money Management
- Tax Planning
- College Planning
- Retirement Planning
- Estate Planning
According to Financial Finesse, the average gender gap in the answers to these questions is now 15 percent, up from 12 percent a year ago. The widest gender gap is in investing and money management, while the smallest gender gap is in retirement and estate planning. There is no gender gap when it comes to participation levels in qualified retirement plans like IRAs and 401(k) plans.
Questions where the widest gender gap was demonstrated include the following:
1. “I have general investment knowledge regarding stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.”
Men — 89%
Women — 66%
2. “I rebalance my accounts to keep my asset allocation plans on track.”
Men — 49%
Women — 25%
3. “I have an emergency fund to cover unexpected expenses or to pay bills for a few months if I lose my job.”
Men — 63%
Women — 43%
4. “I regularly pay off my credit card balances in full.”
Men — 68%
Women — 45%
5. “I understand the tax implications of my investment and retirement accounts.”
Men — 56%
Women — 34%
6. “I have an umbrella insurance policy to protect my assets from lawsuits.”
Men — 37%
Women — 17%
Women today not only constitute the majority of college graduates, but they are making increasing strides in the workforce. Unfortunately, though, this gender gap in financial literacy could serve to undo the financial progress many women are making in these areas. This makes it important that women take steps to educate themselves in some of the areas where their financial literacy is lagging behind, on average.
Material contained in this article is provided for information purposes only and is not intended to be used in connection with the evaluation of any investments offered by David Lerner Associates, Inc. (DLA). This material does not constitute an offer or recommendation to buy or sell securities and should not be considering in connection with the purchase or sale of securities.
Founded in 1976, David Lerner Associates is a privately-held broker/dealer with headquarters in Syosset, New York and branch offices in Westport, CT; Boca Raton, FL; Teaneck and Princeton, NJ; and White Plains, NY. For more information contact David Lerner Associates 1 877 367 5960 http://www.davidlerner.com
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