Hargreaves Lansdown launches Financially Fearless

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Hargreaves Lansdown has launched “Financially Fearless” a new initiative to coincide with International Women’s Day,  that aims to help close the gender investment gap between men and women.

What is the gender investment gap?

Men and women invest differently, men have historically been more inclined to invest, and have had more money to invest when they do.

Women are typically less well paid than men, often taking career breaks to have children or care for sick or elderly relatives, what’s known as the good daughter penalty.

These kinds of social trends can create significant disparities in wealth between men and women.

For example, on average, women in the UK retire with £137,000 less than their male counterparts, according to research by Now: Pensions.

Maike Currie, Hargreaves Lansdown’s head of content, said this about the gender investment gap:

“The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is #EmbraceEquity, and it strikes at the heart of what we are trying to achieve. Yes, women have equality in legislative terms, and that of course is a good thing. But we have a long way to go before we achieve true equity.”

Adding that:

“As an industry, we need to work harder to get the opportunities and resources in place (that are) fit for the choices, circumstances and challenges women often face.”

The gender investment gap isn’t just present in pensions

Hargreaves Lansdown’s own data shows that 62% of the people that hold a stocks and shares ISA, with the broker are men.

This contrasts with a UK population that is split 51% versus 49% in favour of women.

Research from HMRC suggests that women are catching up, however, and nationally, in 2019/20, 52% of all ISA holders were women.

What’s more Hargreaves Lansdown’s female clients are likely to have more money invested in ISAs than their male counterparts.

Female investors are also more likely to take a long-term approach and “get rich slowly”, holding 75% of their ISA assets in funds, rather than single stocks or other assets.

Women save proportionally more than men, despite having lower incomes overall, says the Bristol-based broker.

Women are also more likely to save for others before themselves, which according to Hargreaves is akin to ignoring the instruction to “put on your own oxygen mask first” before you help others.

Hargreaves Lansdown has appointed six campaign ambassadors

Hargreaves Lansdown has nominated six ambassadors from within its workforce as part of the Financially Fearless campaign.

The six female senior executives and managers listed below will share their experiences and insights and can be followed on Instagram with the hashtag #FinanciallyFearless or @financiallyfearless_hl

Sophie Lund-Yates, Hargreaves’ lead equity analyst said:
I am passionate about empowering more women to understand the importance of investing. As someone who doesn’t have a traditional finance background, I’m incredibly eager to spread the message that investing really is for everyone”
And that:
“ It’s so important to have the confidence to ask questions. A lot of women I speak to often think the world of finance and investing isn’t for them. I want to shout from the rooftops that it’s for all of us, and women in particular should push themselves to take the first step.”

It makes no sense for a business to ignore the needs of 51% of the population and by taking the time to understand the differences between male and female savers, and the reasons behind those differences Hargreaves Lansdown can better meet women’s requirements when it comes to savings and investments.

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