Women and Money

I was sitting in a presentation last Saturday with some of my colleagues who were sharing some rather frightening statistics about Women and Money. I felt drawn to share them with you here.

I have always been career oriented and for a baby boomer that was not the normal thing to do. When I was completing my CPA final studies there was only one other woman in our group and there were about 50 men- so a little male dominated 🙂

I then went on to become a financial planner and again at that time the industry was very male oriented. During those years I knew women often did not educate themselves as much as men about money. I thought times had changed so I was very alarmed to hear some of the stats that were shared on Saturday.

Shocking Stats for Women & Their Finances.

  • 47% of women over 50 are single;
  • Women’s retirement income is less than that of men because a woman is away from work force an average of 14.7 years as compared to 1.6 years for men;
  • 50% of marriages end in divorce and in the first year after a divorce a women’s standard of living drops an average of 73%;
  • Of the elderly living in poverty 3 out of 4 are women;
  • 58% of female baby boomers have <$10,000 in retirement;
  • Nearly 7 out of 10 women will at some time live in poverty;
  • Get paid less than men for the same job;
  • Get passed over for promotions   (less women in top jobs).

If we think about it historically, or even traditionally, women have not always been smart about money. Many women have:

  • Married or stayed in bad relationships because of money
  • Left the financial decisions to men or “experts”
  • Think they are not smart enough with money so stay passive in money and money management areas
  • Chose jobs or careers for flexibility with their children
  • Prioritize their husband’s career and therefore not reach their own full income potential.
  • Often choose security over money

In Kim Kiyosaki’s  book  she says “The next economic boom will not be from the Internet, nor China or India, but from Empowering Women.” We seem to be moving in the right direction to do just that with these encouraging  stats in Australia  which show thing may be changing.

Current Stats for Women in Australia:

  • Women own 585,000 of the 1.9 million small businesses.
  • Women own almost half of all home-based businesses and one-third of businesses operating from other locations.
  • Women setting up business from home is the fastest growing sector of the Australian economy.
  • 46% of women run their businesses from home – a 20% increase in the last five years.
  • Women make or influence 80% of all purchasing decisions.
  • Women owned businesses have less external debt, are more profitable and profitable much earlier than those owned by men.

Source: Women’s Network Australia

What I would like to see in these trends is that the income these women are earning be passive or residual. I have written about residual income here.

The other encouraging stat here for me is the increase in home based businesses for women. I have shared before that my one regret looking back is that I never spent enough time with my daughter when she was young. You never get that time back.

A home based business allows women to be with their children and also build a passive income.

Of course men can do the same. It makes my heart sing to see some of the young men in  Network Marketing  being able to go to kids sports and pick them up from school. There are choices for us all if we are open to see them.

Please leave me your comments below. What do you think of these stats for women? Do you think things are changing?

24 thoughts on “Women and Money

  1. Belinda Cunningham

    Great post Sue, I found the statistic frightening but glad to know I am not among the negative ones, I am over 50, not single and have more than 10,ooo in retirement, my standard of living went up when I got rid of the husband years ago and I have never lived in poverty. Just have to work on belonging to the second set of statistics with passive income.
    Belinda Cunningham recently posted..3 – Auto-suggestion – The medium for influencing the subconscious mindMy Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Belinda like you there are many women not part of the frightening statistics. I found it disturbing to read them.
      I wish I had understood passive income much better a long time ago as I think it does really give us freedom.

  2. Louise Steiner

    Great post Sue, but these statistics are quite scary. I still like to think that things are changing slowly. When I started my Investment management career the ratio of men to women was about 10 to 1 (not as bad as your CPA :-)), but by the time I left around 7 years ago the ratio had improved markedly. In fact, out of our team of 5, 3 were women. I also have a number of friends (in fact most of my friends) who are either the primary bread winner in the family or single career women, so I like to think that as the generations come through, those shocking statistics will start to improve.

    It’s encouraging to see the number of women starting businesses from home increasing, but as you say, the number of women creating residual incomes for themselves seems to be lagging significantly. It would be so nice to read some statistics that show women reaching financial independence, rather than just doing well in their careers.
    Louise Steiner recently posted..Mindset and Fairy Dresses How Making a Fairy Dress Changed My Mindset And My Life!My Profile

  3. Sue Post author

    I agree with you Louise as I too see evidence of change in this area. And the stats I quoted from when I became a CPA have dramatically changed. Your idea on seeing stats on women reaching financial independence rather than success in career is excellent. There are a lot of people in top jobs who earn a big salary but spend it all. I always love the saying “it is not what you earn but how much you keep and have working for you.”
    Take care,

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  5. Linda G. Cox

    I thought I left a comment here the other day but it’s not here! If this is a repeat, just delete it!
    I have a special spot in my heart for women! Maybe because I am one :)! Or maybe because I worked for a few years in an abused women’s shelter, getting a first had view of the effects of their percieved powerlessness. That was 20 years ago, my trooper husband tells me that now-a-days there are more women doing the abusing than there used to be. I’m not sure I believe that!
    Whether or not that’s true, you’ve shown us some undeniable facts about women!
    It’s really fun to be marketing online and see the woman able to be home with their kids and succeed monitarily online!
    Linda G. Cox recently posted..Multiple Sclerosis- Walking Update- Sep 1- 2010My Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Hi Linda
      This is not a duplicate – well I have not seen a comment before 🙂
      Wow your husbands comment on women doing the abusing is interesting. I never think of it happening that way.
      I agree with you that the online world has opened up a whole new world for women to be home with their kids and succeed monitarily. I think we are living in very exciting times with many opportunities available now. I am sure the stats can change.
      Have a great week.

  6. Oliver Tausend

    Hi Sue,

    a great post. I embrace the idea of women becoming independent from men. Financial independence is an important part of that.

    I’m married and I’ve got two lovely daughters, it’s the most natural thing to educate my kids in the field of money. To do so, I needed to educate myself first, other than I used to be educated.

    I absolutely love Kim’s book and I had read it before my wife read it. One year ago, we struggled in our marriage because she didn’t want to become financially independent, from me and in general.

    That’s a case that isn’t covered in Kim’s book, by the way. Husband wants his wife to become rich and independent from him.

    Meanwhile, she read Kim’s book, she loves it. She even met Kim back in June this year in Stuttgart and visited Ron Salvador’s Cashflow-Entrepreneur-Training last weekend, without me. I enjoyed the weekend with our kids.

    Women are perfect for network marketing once they build enough trust and self-confidence that they can do it. They need to stop trying to imitate male behaviour because network marketing is neither a sales nor a recruiting business and focus on their strengths.

    Thanks for sharing your insights.

    Take care

    Oliver Tausend recently posted..Lessons From “Think And Grow Rich” – Chapter 2 “Desire”My Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Hi Oliver
      It is really good to hear a man say he embraces women becoming financially independent in their own right. You raise an interesting point in the fact that your wife did not initially want to become financially independent from you and I know you are not the only couple who have been through that scenario. Kim did not cover it in her book and perhaps that is because she is so fiercely independent she has no idea other women are not like her. Not sure but it could be. She is very competitive and ambitious.
      I think Robert and Kim have a great marriage as he like you believes women should be financially independent in their own right.
      I was brought up in an era that in the main women thought they would meet a man and he would take care of them. Many of my friends after they had children did not work or have incomes of their own. That never appealed to me 🙂
      Great to hear your wife is now on board with this message.
      I too think women are great for network marketing and totally agree we need to do it differently from men. That was a lesson I learned in my financial planning days. I used to try to imitate my male colleagues behavior and it did not get me very far. I changed that!
      Thanks Oliver for your comments as always.
      Have a great day.

  7. Don Enck

    The post you share presents some sobering statistics for women. Being a part of a company with my wife that is made up of about 95% women I have seen these numbers before. They were shared with the intent that the business we are in is a great place for other women. Direct Sales and Network Marketing as an industry is made up of more women than men. It is a perfect business model for those looking to create a better lifestyle around time freedom. I’m in complete agreement that Empowering Women is the next business boom. This is the changing landscape of the new economy and a person would be foolish not to look at this.
    Don Enck recently posted..The Slight Edge and Online MarketingMy Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Hi Don
      Yes the facts are sobering. I thought we had changed this around but there is still a long way to go for women.
      I agree NWM is a great business for women. I think as well as the lifestyle and freedom the education and personal development is very important. It may just be this vehicle that serves to empower women into the next business boom.
      Take care

  8. Walter

    Things have indeed changed Sue and I believe this is a great success of our current time. Women are indeed good leaders and we can see this fact from developed countries. 🙂

    1. Sue Post author

      Thanks for dropping by Walter. Yes things have changed so I was surprised to read the stats. The stats I quote in the main are from the US. I agree women are good leaders 🙂 I would just like to see more financially independent in their own right.

  9. Patricia

    Hi Sue
    I came across from Louise’s site. Great to meet another Aussie in the blogosphere. I’m not surprised by the stats as I’m a babyboomer and have read this before.
    It’s great that women are now getting more money-savvy and taking responsibility for their own lives. My Mother always took care of the money side of things in our home and she’s now 88yrs young. So there are exceptions to all the examples out there eh. She wasn’t a career woman though and felt totally fulfilled as a wife and Mother.
    With meeting fellow bloggers in the short time I’ve been blogging; I have noticed the difference between the way we blog. I appreciate the differences and have had heaps of encouragement from both the male and female bloggers. I think younger women are becoming more independent and I see this with my Gen Y niece and her plans for when she & her fiance get married.
    Patricia Perth Australia
    Patricia recently posted..Growing Lavenders-Are You a PuristMy Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Hi Patricia
      Thanks for coming over to my blog. I am from Perth originally and am also a baby boomer. I left Perth at the beginning of 1996.
      I also have a Mum who was a stay at home Mum and managed the money. It was not what I would call wealth creation though, more like making it last.
      I do think things are changing for sure.
      I agree with you that women and men have different styles in blogging. I have found so many helpful people since I started early this year.
      Take care

  10. Mike Ramsey

    Based from my experience, my mom used to be a freelancer & businesswoman before. However, she needs to sacrifice her career because of us. She wasn’t lucky to retire during this time where offline business is already possible. I can’t just imagine how disappointed she was few years back as a result of her early retirement at the peak of her career. I’m glad everything changed as we are going to the modern technology era.
    Mike Ramsey recently posted..Tips On How To Stop Excessive SweatingMy Profile

    1. Sue Post author

      Hi Mike
      It must have been very difficult for your mom, but that was the choice women were faced with not that many years ago.
      We are now blessed to live in this modern tech time as you say. I wonder could your mom build an online business now/
      Thanks for dropping by to my blog.

        1. Sue Post author

          Hi Mike
          I am guessing you are referring to your partner. I have friends who do not use computers still too. I used to be afraid of them 🙂
          All in our own time.

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