Women When it boils down to fundamentals, planning for women is not much different than planning for men. After all we share common goals: wealth maximization, risk minimization and cost containment. Both ought to strive for an optimal investment mix and both should start investing for retirement at an early age to take advantage of compounding. So, with regard to investing, there is no difference between genders and there is no special need that women have. Yet, unlike men, women face many unique issues that most men don’t. Women’s life histories and the way they interact with employer-sponsored benefit plans, individual savings and insurance plans, Social Security, and other social safety net programs often create financial shortfalls. High divorce rates and the high probability of widowhood also have a substantial impact on the financial circumstances of women. Some of the Challenges Women FaceLonger life spansShorter and interrupted working careersEarnings disparityRetirement systems that penalize women for temporary absence from workforceFinancial literacySome Startling Statistics About Women and MoneyWomen rely on Social Security for a larger part of their income in retirement than do men, because women are less likely to have income from their own pensions than men (21% of women vs. 42% of men) ‘ and their pension benefits are less than half of men’s’ on average.Nearly 20% of unmarried women 65 and older live below the poverty line.Women need more retirement income but they usually have less– women working full-time are still earning only 76% of what men earn or an equal job.Estimates suggest there are around 23 million unpaid care providers (for children or elderly parents) in the U.S. Seven in ten are women.Facing the ChallengesBecause of the unique set of challenges that women encounter, planning is more important than ever. From the individual’s perspective, the steps are fairly obvious: Get involved in the household finances and get informedStay out of debtTake advantage of employer sponsored plansDon’t have a corporate retirement plan—start your own individual retirement accountsExplore the use of spousal IRA’s when you are out of the workforce raising your childrenEstablish your long term goals (future income needs, time horizon, etc)Determine a target asset amountSave lavishly for yourselfIdentify an appropriate investment policyInvest soundly and monitor progress on regular basisUpdate your portfolio as your life changes or as you approach retirementSome of the women we work with includeBusiness ownersProfessionals (attorneys, doctors, executives, CPA’s, etc.)TeachersDivorceesWidowsRetirees Have a Question? Name Email Address Phone Question Thank you! Oops!