Who manages the investments in your household? And who tinkers with and sets the budget in your family? Read on and find out who tends to prevail in each financial task.
I don’t want to start a gender war, but I found several interesting surveys on finance that seem to be at odds with each other. I’m sure there are many more such reports and studies out there on this somewhat controversial subject, but allow me to present a sampling. Note that the numbers here have been gathered rather informally (and there’s nothing scientific about them) and thus, I wouldn’t consider them significantly conclusive. However, they certainly offer food for thought:
Financial Surveys Based On Gender
1. 60DaysToChange.com’s survey. I once came across a survey that’s been linked to the site 60DaysToChange.com, where respondents were asked to reveal their top two concerns regarding financial matters and they responded with “debt and budgeting”. Curiously, the answers were very similar between men and women. But the notable thing here was that more women participated in it — “nearly 75% of survey participants were women, indicating that women are more likely than men to seek outside guidance during tough financial times.”
2. Financial Finesse’s survey. On the other hand, Financial Finesse put together their own Q & A, involving 3,000 responses to a questionnaire that were gathered to show how men and women view their personal finances. This particular survey reveals how men seem to be much more comfortable and confident about money than women are.
Here is a peek at the Financial Finesse survey results:
3. Synovate survey. There’s also this international survey by a market research firm called Synovate, that indicates that when it comes to money, women are more responsible than men, with findings that point out that women are less likely to get into debt and are more likely to strive harder to become financially independent. The international study was actually held in 12 countries, so could this imply that gender has a bigger influence on the way we look at money than does nationality or culture?
So which of these findings do you believe? Fascinating how different studies can be in such disagreement.
How Does Your Household Manage Money Stress?
The 60 Days To Change study also tells us something we already know: “over half of the survey participants (57%) admit to having a great deal of money and work stress.” During somber economic times, we middle class and working folks end up feeling kind of stressed. What kind of stressful financial events do we normally experience? A lot of problems that many families face are due to having limited household incomes to tide them over. I’ll ask this tough question: can a modern family live on one salary? Some wise old man will say that it depends on the amount of wages that the breadwinners bring in. But if you’re in a middle class family, you know the answer — you’d affirm that no, it’s a challenge to be living on one salary today, and it would be no surprise that a dual income is required just to make ends meet.
Also, these days, it’s rare to have a family or a couple that doesn’t carry any form of debt. The latest figures indicate that American consumers as a whole owe the staggering sum of more than 2 trillion dollars on their credit cards and retail credit. That sure is something to be stressed about.
Many households now require the teamwork of both wives and husbands (or couples) to survive the financial stress that modern lifestyles bring.
Who’s Better At Managing Money: Men or Women?
This brings to my mind the saying that behind every successful man there is a very smart woman (or something of that nature). I can only say that without the savvy of my wife I would probably be a wino living on the streets of a big city, stretching my hand for a charitable donation. On the other hand, here’s one more point that is not too flattering for the men: I’ve read an MSN Money article that states that we macho men tend to show off our money to conquer the opposite sex. That is, the desire to impress and attract a woman can motivate a man to spend more and to use his credit card more often than he otherwise would. In fact, using money in this fashion can have a negative impact on one’s financial status and health.
And what about these additional revelations from the same article: “Results (of yet another survey) show that women are considerably more likely than men to shred their credit cards (55% versus 43%), while men are more likely to throw them in the garbage (34% versus 25%).” Hmmm….throwing the offers in the garbage is a highly risky thing to do, as any skillful identity thief will tell you. Now if we are to make conclusions based on this poll, you’d wonder whether it’s the ladies who are thriftier and more careful about their money than the men are! But I don’t think it’s necessarily that cut and dried.
Whether or not it’s the men or the women who are better at managing money, we do owe it to ourselves to try to work together as a financial team at home, for the sakes of our families.
So what kind of differences have you noticed between the way men and women handle their money? How does it work in your household?
Created September 7, 2009. Updated April 23, 2012. Copyright © 2012 The Digerati Life. All Rights Reserved.