Women take the lead in 60% of Isa decisions

12th April 2016

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Women take the lead over their partners when it comes to investing with 60% of women investors take the lead in their household when it comes to making ISA decisions says research from the Share Centre.

One in three say they don’t have the confidence to talk about investments and the stock market

A new survey by The Share Centre has found that UK women are in control when it comes to their domestic finances – with well over half of female investors saying they take the lead in their household when it comes to making investment decisions.

The survey of women investors* found that 60% take the lead on ISA investing, compared to 28% who rely on their husband or partner, and just 12% who make investment decisions jointly. A quarter of female investors have previously dealt on behalf of a male relative or partner.

Despite being in the driving seat when it comes to investment decisions, only 27% of female investors said they would feel confident when talking about the stock market, although 43% feel they know enough to get their point across. Nearly one in three (30%) say they wouldn’t know where to start.

However, adding further weight to the argument that female investors are more confident than they think, 58% of respondents invest directly in shares, with only 28% preferring the more ‘hands off’ approach of funds.

With lots of publicity around pension shortfalls, it doesn’t come as a surprise that 63% of female ISA investors are investing for retirement. Although some are investing for children and for a rainy day, these are secondary goals. Several respondents also mentioned that they treat investing as a hobby, since they find it interesting and fun, with one commenting, “It keeps my brain working!”

Just over three quarters (77%) of female ISA investors “don’t trade very often”. This fits with the strategy of many long-term investors who ‘buy and hold’, rather than trying to time the markets by frequently buying and selling. Only 17% trade monthly, suggesting that many are missing out on the potential benefits of regular investing, such as cheaper dealing charges and Pound Cost Averaging (a technique that reduces exposure to falling markets through investing regularly).

The research was made up of a total sample size of 288 female investors holding a Stocks and Shares ISA with The Share Centre. Fieldwork was undertaken in March 2016. The survey was carried out online.

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