Women Ignored?

Forget shows like The View. An increasing number of women are handling their own finances and want to talk money, but many firms aren’t listening.

Mutual fund companies aren't helping financial advisors satisfy women's investing and planning needs — or so avers one recent report.

With divorce rates escalating and more women outliving their spouses, fiscal responsibility has become as crucial for women as it has for men, according to Corporate Insight, a consultancy. The report's author says 80 percent to 90 percent of women will manage their own finances at some point in their lives. And the report concludes that not enough fund companies are getting off their duffs to give reps the right resources and help these women get their finances on track.

The report, published in April, entitled Women and Investing: Shifting the Traditional Sales Paradigm, says that only about one-third of the fund complexes it evaluated have Web resources geared toward that segment of the marketplace.

One wonders how this could be true, since never in the history of the world has so much financial information been available to all, male or female, for free on the Internet. Novices and experts alike can get their fill. And just what constitutes financial information for women anyway?

Alan Maginn, The author of the report allows, “With few firms addressing the topic, it is difficult to make sweeping generalizations regarding the industry's reaction to women investors.” Still, “based on what we have seen, that segment, from a Web site perspective, is vastly underserved.

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