How do we get more women investors participating?

This is something that has been preying on my mind over last 6 months and more. And it gets triggered whenever we see a lady investor registering with VP, but very very rarely do we see some of them making a post, asking a clarification and/or contributing to a discussion.

The stats are abysmal! Not sure but I think not more than 45 registered among a VP subscriber base of 9000+. Just how lopsided is this?

I haven’t been able to educate my better-half on investments :wink: but I made sure my twin daughters (11+) are getting savvy by the day. Infact this summer vacation they compiled a presentation “Being Wise with Money” and shared that with some of my investor friends with children of similar age like Tirumal Rao …(that’s probably another thread…)

Last 2-3 weeks, somehow there’s been a spate of more women registrations. This time I decided to reach out and immediately - got positive responses from Ann, Kritika, Rumi and a few more on - how do we give this a fillip - talk to more of your women friends - if you have been lucky to become financially literate, you do have a duty to educate more women friends, right?

Fortunately folks like Ann and Kritika are energised to take this initiative forward. A few good options have also been discussed among us. We decided to just throw this discussion open and devise some nice ways of moving forward as we get more women and men folks to participate in this initiative.

Important to remember - this is not about directly jumping into equity - but starting with the basics - Why to Invest, How to invest, Where to Invest topics (if you haven’t noticed nice articles on that already exist at VP by the way) - and then slowly gradually migrating them to try out equity investing in a small way - proof of the pudding being in the eating! In the process we are sure VP will be richer with more contributions from a more intuitive set of investors.

Handing over the floor to Ann and Kritika, and Rumi and all the lady evangelists!

Ciao

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Thank You Donald :slight_smile:
One reason I can think of why women shy away from investing is about the risk involved.
I’d like to share a quote - adviser Becky Saeger says to women who are taking the investment plunge:
“Risk averse doesn’t mean you’re afraid—it means you’re thinking.”

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Hi @anngeo10,

In ref to risk Warren Buffett says - “Risk comes from not knowing what you are doing”. I think a platform like VP can be really helpful in getting educated about the companies, the underlying business, the risks and positives etc etc. Its all about the process and thanks to the members - we are having extensive discussions about the business models, competitive landscape etc. Any person with a internet connection, sufficient time and intent to learn can greatly benefit :smile:

But as Donald says - one should start with basics - why to invest and where to invest. It will be great if we can share good articles and take the discussion forward on specific queries/concerns.

Regards,
Ayush

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Might inspire someone :blush:

I was investing on and off(for many years, with no direction) till last year-end, and I met Shilpa Madam(name changed), last Decemeber. We used to commute to work on a hired taxi everyday, and one fine day when we were discussing Chennai’s property market, Madam explained me about how staying long on the market helped her make big returns. Madam explained me about her key picks(simple names like SBI, IndusInd - entered at right valuations) and the rationale for holding to those names for a very long time. Her balance on keeping emotions in check was amazing. Off-hand I was explained the profits she was sitting on, on her huuge portfolio. That made me sit back and have a rethink about investing.

Ofcourse, that was the beginning point.

But it was Valuepickr which gave me the edge, and I have benefitted immensely. I have been a regular here in the forum for the last 6 months, and I am able to realise the benefits when I see the big green tick in my pf :smiley:

Madam was a very big inspiration for me to re-enter the market and become an active investor.

Some stories which I had bookmarked earlier from web:
Source: Business News Today: Read Latest Business news, India Business News Live, Share Market & Economy News | The Economic Times

Story of another lady: At 28, a paraplegic, she trades like a pro - Rediff.com Get Ahead

I hope I haven’t strayed off topic. Thought sharing this will be useful.

Thanks,
Ravi S

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Back in 2010 I read this blogger http://www.tipblog.in/ebook/ who had prepared a nice 20 odd page document to describe the basics of personal finance & investing. TIPBlog - Investing Roadmap.pdf (842.1 KB)

Hope this helps people who are currently at starting line.

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I believe, many of us new guys, sometimes tend to use strong words, even if unintentionally. Most of the times it is ignored, but it can put off a new member very easily. May discourage them from posting further.

Being kinder with words and our approach seems like a starting point.

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Thanks for taking the initiative Donald.

I understand that you wish to generate more ideas on how to give a platform to women investors to engage with each other and share investing related ideas.

Here are some of the thoughts that first come to mind (I apologise in advance for the long discourse!):

Why do we have less women investors?

Before we can think about bringing a change, it would be pertinent to understand the underlying reasons for such dismal numbers of women involvement in investing, financial planning, etc. In my view, it boils down to the way we are brought up. Let me explain.

I am a CA and used to work with KPMG. I gave my salary to my father to invest the way he deemed fit. Why did I do that? Well, it’s not that I did not possess the financial acumen to understand annual reports. As I see it, it was because I had always seen that my dad held the reigns when it came to money. And my grandfather before that. So I simply presumed (most of it subconsciously, I guess) that men are responsible for (and maybe better at) managing money. I saw the same pattern play out even at KPMG which had a good number of women employees. While some men discussed investments and equity markets, women generally stayed away. In hindsight, it looks quite strange (and disheartening) as these women were confident and successful professionals striving to be ‘financially independent’.

I feel that women don’t get down to understanding investments simply because they feel that it is a man’s job. I used to be a part of this thought process.

I think that if women felt that they were equally responsible for investment decisions, they would make an effort to learn… I sense this in myself today and even in some of the women that I have interacted with, who take active part in investment related decision making.

Where can we start?

I thought about what is difference in the cases where women are taking an active part vis-a vis others. As I see it, the difference lies in whether or not these women have been introduced to investing… Once women truly understand the power of compounding and how they can build long term wealth through equity markets, they are hooked. They read books, research and put in hours to understand things they don’t. And they have no qualms doing this while juggling work, kids and home.

So what is it that I am proposing? At ValuePickr, we are a 10K+ community. We can leverage this. Let us all (men or women) introduce our family members, friends, colleagues, etc. to investing. ValuePickr has a great section on investing basics… that can be a starting point. We can maybe have a small thread on books that can be referred to by beginners…

This thread is about generating more ideas… So let’s all brainstorm… think aloud… we might just stumble upon something great!

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Great reference by Raj Panda in post #5 above. I have also spent a lot of time lurking on TIPBlog, before coming across TED, and then Valuepickr. I would endorse the TIPBlog Investing Roadmap e-book.

Most of the following is not gender specific, but might still be relevant to this thread:
Quoting from the book 100-to-1 in the stock market by Thomas Phelps, which comes highly endorsed by Raamdeo Agrawal and Prof. Bakshi:

To benefit from investing in a great stock (author talks about multibaggers, but I think same applies for any good stock) requires:
0. Savings (my own addition, since this is a precursor to investing)

  1. Vision to see (selecting/filtering appropriate stock)
  2. Courage to buy
  3. Patience to hold

Anyone visiting Valuepickr should close this thread and visit other threads for executing step 1.

In my personal view and experience (which most people would agree to, I guess) as a general trend (not specific to particular individuals) women are much better than men at step 0 and step 3. In fact, the author says that of the 3 attributes, patience is the least common attribute - rarely found in women, and never found in men. I think most persons (and not just women, or not just Indians) have a weakness with step 2, mostly due to the misunderstanding that stocks are risky (which is not actually true if your investment horizon is more than 5-7 years). I think all experienced Valuepickrs would agree that stocks = volatility, and most would also agree that volatility is not equivalent to risk. On the contrary, volatility could easily become a friend of the long term stock investor. One way to do away with this misunderstanding is by getting this fact acknowledged from people you trust (we trust a lot of people, including the panwala for stock tips) e.g. this community, and later by experiencing the same for oneself. As success begets more success, so confidence with stock investing begets more confidence (we should keep confidence in check, but that is for later) and that means more confident investors participating on a forum like valuepickr. Just like overcoming the writers’ block, one needs to overcome the fear of stock investing. One could start with bluechip stocks like HDFC Bank, Sun Pharma, Lupin, which have a tendency and history of being less volatile, yet giving excellent returns. If that also doesn’t sound plausible, one could start by doing an SIP in mutual funds. And continue increasing one’s % allocation to stocks till one reaches a point beyond which one is not comfortable investing more % of one’s portfolio in stocks (most valuepickrs would have 100% of portfolio in stocks or cash - waiting for the opportune time to invest in stocks).

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Thank you Kritika!
This is simple, doable and brilliant.

What you are saying is all of us can be part of the solution - introduce more women to basics of investing - the miracle of compounding - the rest will follow!!

Awesome. This is exactly what happened to me. I lost the first 10-12 years of professionally earned money - to not caring too hoots about money. Not only mine but my wife’s too. Buy boy, once I understood what I had missed and what I can never catch up with ever - there was only one thing to do - try and become smarter and smarter about compounding what I earned henceforth.

You have also added that once women appreciate Compounding - there is no stopping them - they will make sure they read the books, research and put in hours to understand things they don’t. And they have no qualms doing this while juggling work, kids and home :slight_smile:

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Think we have the first concrete step to take:

  1. Enrol more & more women - introduce them to basics of investing and compounding

I am putting my hand up!. This thread itself is a good starting point for me to invite women I know personally - boy that will be a daunting task, and God knows what I am landing myself (and VP into…had a first glimpse of that today in another thread) into :wink: But everyday if I send out 20 invites, this can surely make a difference in the end

How many of you want to do this? We need a gang of volunteers :smile:

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Donald,

Excerpt from ‘The Little Book of Talent’ is given below. Using the same idea, if we can get some of them to participate and use that to send digest emails to non-participants then chances of getting more participants is very high.

In 1997, there were no South Korean golfers on the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour. Today there are more than forty, winning one-third of all events. What happened? One golfer succeeded (Se Ri Pak, who won two major tournaments in 1998), and, through her, hundreds of South Korean girls were ignited by a new vision of their future selves. As the South Korean golfer Christina Kim put it, “You say to yourself, ‘If she can do it, why can’t I?’ ”.

Regards,
Jana

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First off, great initiative.

Would like to quote from a highly recommended book -

STARE AT WHO YOU WANT TO BECOME!

Think of your windshield as an energy source for your brain. Use pictures (the walls of many talent hotbeds are cluttered with photos and posters of their stars) or, better, video. One idea: Bookmark a few YouTube videos, and watch them before you practice, or at night before you go to bed.”

― Daniel Coyle, The Little Book of Talent

Did not see @jvembuna 's post… but both the quotes are from the first page of the first chapter.
Similar to how Sania and Saina are providing inspiration for the next generation of female sports-persons.

In the above spirit, i would like to share videos of a bonafide Value Investor of Indian origin,
Rupal Bhansali of Ariel Investments





Must watch for all irrespective of gender!

Another successful women investor from across the border!

In Pakistan, it’s difficult to find a more successful money manager than Maheen Rahman.
The 39-year-old turned a loss—making asset management company into a profitable acquisition target, led her flagship equity fund to the country’s top performance and positioned her new firm for what she estimates will be a 40 percent jump in client assets this year. For all that, Rahman still struggles to prove she belongs in an industry where all 21 of her rival chief executive officers are men.

“My biggest challenge has been building a reputation and trust in a market that values grey hair and being male,” said Rahman, who oversees the equivalent of $180 million in stocks and bonds as the CEO of Alfalah GHP Investment Management Ltd. in Karachi. “After all these years, I still routinely get asked why I don’t just design clothes.”

While Rahman’s rise to the top of a financial firm would have been almost unheard of in Pakistan two decades ago, her struggle to gain the acceptance of male peers illustrates the challenge professional women still face in a country with the smallest proportion of female workers among Asia’s 15 largest economies. Investors who bet on Rahman have been rewarded with a 443 percent return from her IGI Stock Fund since its inception seven years ago, 117 percentage points more than the benchmark index and the biggest gain among 34 peers tracked by Bloomberg.

Financial independence is a great common motivator irrespective of gender,
I strongly believe “financial independence” provides the best pathway towards women empowerment.

It does not have to be the above 2 women.
One can find others who can be that spark to ignite your motivation to attain your financial independence!

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Donald,
A sticky thread “with basics” will help. This can be at the top of forum or a separate section would help.

There is lot of things in the forum that one gets lost and also one doesn’t know where to start. E.g. in one is not interested that much in stock that he leaves after two three visits. If one has landed because he wants to read about the stocks then he sticks to the forum.

The invitation based model is attracting the first part where they want to know but might not be that much interested.

So having a separate basics thread targeting the new investor or woman would help…

Thanks

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I think its a great opportunity for VP to be more inclusive and invite more such members.
I am sure we will get ever better ideas, eg because of left/right brain theory etc and other complementary skills
Who knows this time a lady doctor can find a next Ajanta pharma :smile:

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Below is the edited text of an email conversation I had with a friend about building wealth. It goes without saying that there is a lot more to investing but I feel this will give a broad idea of the effects of compounding to those who are starting out. Hope those new to investing find it useful. You can also have a look at the attached excel file.

This email is with reference to the conversation that we had regarding the fastest way of building wealth. I have no clue of the fastest, but I believe the surest way of passively building long term wealth is to invest in the equity markets for a really long time. It is only when you make your money work for you that you unleash the power of compounding and start building wealth.

But, before I delve into why I feel so, let me clarify that this is only my opinion. It is like asking a barber whether you need a haircut. Ultimately, this is my truth and remember, what is truth to one may be disaster to another.

With that caveat in mind, I’ll come back to the subject. Investing in the equity markets is like investing in various businesses which you like. If you believe in the long term growth story of India and you feel India as a country is going to prosper over the next 50 years, then the only way it is going to happen is if Indian companies do really well. And the stock market allows you to enjoy the benefits of that prosperity, without having to actively manage any of those companies.

You asked about multiplying money 70-80 times in the next 10 years. That amounts to a 55% annual compounded rate. In my opinion, that is too high a rate to achieve for any meaningful period of time, without risking permanent loss of capital.

Attached is an excel sheet which will help you understand that you do not need such a high rate of return to truly become rich. The focus instead, should be on achieving a better than average rate of return over a really long period. I have listed out a target return for you to earn over the next 25 years. Just see how quickly money grows once you cross the 15 year mark. I think building wealth is all about building a base. And once you have built that base, you start reaping the rewards pretty quickly.

My purpose of attaching the excel sheet is that whenever you have any anxiety of not earning a high rate of return, just pull out this sheet and remember, you don’t have to earn exceedingly high returns to be really rich. You just have to be patient.

Anyway, I think I should stop here, before I bore you to death.

I’ll leave you with these profound words which have had an impact on me: “Remember that money is not about consumption, it is about freedom”

Building Wealth - Effects of Compounding.xlsx (18.2 KB)

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Thanks Pankaj,

Yes, I intend to start a Investing Basics Category, and start individual topics within that with lot of material already available and can be contributed by members

Only then Invitation will make sense - You are right

Very informative and knowledgeable videos.worth watching and good learning experience.

Thanks and regards
Nitin

http://www.joshuakennon.com/blog-demographics-2014-edition-richer-better-educated-kids/

this website observed similar things please read the post and read reply by women on it … i am sure it would be worth the time.

This is a very challenging thing to do but yes, if as a community, someone can give a great push to the cause, it is the ValuePickr Community. Very recently, I was sitting with a person in Senior management in HDFC who was discussing the same issues with me. Infact, since one of his friend participated in one of my workshops, he challenged me to get her wife interested in the field of investing :smile: , which I excepted but doing it a bigger scale will be an interesting challenge.

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I have not stopped by after opening the account and finally got around to looking at your post only today. I have been an investor in markets for over 15 years, love all things investment, have a reasonable risk appetite and am very keen to add to my current knowledge through reading and practice.
For the last 15 years it never struck me that i was a bit of an oddity in markets. But the last 6 months as I have subscribed to groups, investing communities etc, i realise how few women there are in this area.
Education is the most critical bit. I guess most women are on a backfoot and not sure how to start. There is no semblance of financial education to kids at school so it is either their initiative or an enabling environment at home that can change the situation.

All financial topics are discussed at home with my son and daughter. I share (in a restricted manner) financial information with them, take them through real estate and equity buys, the rationale, the negotiation and due diligence in case of property etc. I also send them to complete simple banking transactions (deposits, withdrawals etc), they prepare cheques that are needed for school and I sign them. They will soon start investing under my guidance.

Sites such as yours can start the education process. Basics are needed. But how do we get in the members . . i have no clue ! But I put my hand up for the gang of volunteers. Feel free to let me know how I can help.

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