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Women on a path to gender equity in investment

by eToro analyst for Romania, Bogdan Maioreanu



March 8 is International Women’s Day that celebrates the achievements of women and pushes for rights progress. The first recorded celebration was in 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland when over a million people rallied to support women's rights. During time it grew in importance as women gained voting and other social and economic rights. At a global level since 1990 we are seeing an improvement of the gender inequality index. But there is still room for improvement.


When it comes to investments, Romania has the lowest number of female investors, reveals eToro Retail Investor Beat survey. Out of the 500 investors surveyed only 33% are women. By comparison, Poles have 42%, Czechs 37% and Americans 51% women investors. And this is in the context when access to investment in local and international stocks is very easy due to the evolution of electronic investments platforms.


It was not always so easy. In 1967 there were no women in the New York Stock Exchange. A woman named Muriel Siebert wanted to buy a seat on the stock exchange floor and in order to do this she needed a male “sponsor”. She was turned down nine times before finding the sponsor. Finally she bought her floor spot on the NYSE but this was a singular event for a long time. “For ten years it was 1,365 men and me,” she said.


Now, access to investment assets is simpler than in the 1970’s. But Romanian women are still more reluctant than men to go on this route. According to the eToro Female Investor Beat survey, 19% of questioned women believe that the hardest thing in investments is to know what to invest in, 13% believe it is how to start and 15.6% believe that finding credible information is the most difficult thing about investments.


For more women than men the main reason to start investing is long term financial security while the proportion reverses when it comes to supplementing their revenues, according to the eToro data. If we are looking at the holding period of investments, 63% of questioned women investors declared that they are keeping their assets for years and even decades.


When it comes to the main investment themes, both women and men are attracted to crypto assets and digital payments. But the two genders have different investment topics, with men preferring Robots and Automation, while women are looking at deglobalization and population aging. If we look at the asset classes, beside cash, the next asset in which the largest number of both women and men are investing is crypto, followed by bonds, local and international shares.


In the end, the question is how to have more women investors? eToro Female Investor Beat survey asked them this question and public awareness and education about investing seems to be the key. In Romania, 45% of the women respondents believe that more women speaking about investing will help females get into the world of financial markets. A majority (58%) think that more education on the internet and social media will also help while half believe that financial education in schools is needed.



Bogdan Maioreanu, eToro analyst and markets commentator, has over 20 years of experience in financial services and investments and a strong background in journalism. He held different Corporate Banking management positions in both Raiffeisen Bank and OTP Bank, before moving to business consultancy roles working for IBM Romania among others. Bogdan is an Executive MBA from Asebuss and Washington University.


About eToro

eToro is a multi-asset investment platform that empowers people to grow their knowledge and wealth as part of a global community of successful investors. eToro was founded in 2007 with the vision of opening up the global markets so that everyone can trade and invest in a simple and transparent way. Today, eToro is a global community of more than 30 million registered users who share their investment strategies; and anyone can follow the approaches of those who have been the most successful. Due to the simplicity of the platform users can easily buy, hold and sell assets, monitor their portfolio in real time, and transact whenever they want.