Mumbai, November 4: Creating a robust investment portfolio is an important imperative for all individuals. However, all things constant, it is more if not equally important for women to save money. If that was not enough, an average working woman needs to save more money than men.
While one can argue that in India the men of the family, ie husbands and sons take care of the women, it is precisely that kind of narrative that needs to change. Women need to live an empowered life and a key part of that is financial freedom and the ability to save and invest.
According to a survey conducted by Sample Registration System under the census office, on an average, in India, a man will live for another 17 years and a woman for 19 years after turning 60. On an average, an Indian woman’s life span is 69.6 years, almost three years more than that of a man. Since women outlive men, they need to have a nest egg that is larger than that of men.
There continues to persist a significant disparity in how men and women are paid. According to a global study, as of 2019, women still make only $0.79 for every dollar that men make. Women in general are less likely to hold high-level, high-paying jobs than men. There continues to be structural barriers in workplaces across the world that bar women from advancing in the workplace. Since women in any case earn less than men, it becomes all the more important that they focus on building a good investment portfolio.
Most women, because of the societal structure or perhaps because of their own idiosyncratic needs, do not experience a straight line career graph. Many women end of taking a break from their career post marriage or pregnancy. This often sets them back on their career growth and accordingly impacts their income. In order to ensure that this gap away from work does not impact the overall retirement corpus, women investors should ensure that they create an investment portfolio that reflect such unique circumstance, something that the men need not necessarily contend with.
At the end of the day, women must recognise the unique challenges that they face and should start saving and investing as early as possible to overcome them.