Legacy Retirement addresses men, women, and investment partnerships
Contributed by Legacy Retirement Advisors
Men, women differ in their approach to investing
–Many studies have shown that men and women tend to have different approaches to investing. In general, men are more aggressive in their investment strategies, whereas women tend to be more conservative.
The difference is probably not surprising, but the practical results of these different approaches may not be what you expect.
Research dating back to the 1990s suggests that women investors often outperform male investors, especially in down markets when a more conservative approach may help limit losses. A recent study focusing only on 2014 and 2015 found that women also outperformed men in an up market (see chart).
Frequent trading vs. buy and hold
The most fundamental reason for this performance disparity seems to be that men are more likely to trade frequently in an effort to “beat the market,” while women typically follow a long-term buy-and-hold philosophy. Regardless of one’s gender, frequent trading is a slippery slope. In 2015, a down year for the market, investors who turned over 100-percent of their portfolio holdings lost almost 5-percent for the year, whereas investors who turned over less than 10-percent lost only about 1-percent.
A question of confidence
Men tend to be more confident than women regarding their investment knowledge, which helps explain their tendency toward frequent trading. Clearly, confidence is a positive trait, but overconfidence can be dangerous. Low confidence can be dangerous, too, if it leads to a lack of action or an overly conservative approach. Both men and women may need to assume some investment risk to make their savings last over a long retirement, and women — who generally live longer than men — are likely to be the primary decision maker at some point in their lives.
Take a tip from the pros
The world of professional investment management is still dominated by men. Less than 10-percent of U.S. mutual fund managers are women, and only 2-percent of the total amount invested in such funds is managed exclusively by women. Although the sample size is small, female-managed funds have performed about the same as funds managed by men. However, management teams that include both genders — representing about one out of five funds — have outperformed funds managed by only men or only women.
This may be a worthwhile lesson for couples to consider. Rather than letting different investment approaches get in your way, you might take advantage of those differences by maintaining a true financial partnership, acting as checks and balances on each other and finding a middle ground. This includes not only sharing investment decisions but also making sure each of you has the knowledge and confidence necessary to make decisions on your own if that time ever comes. As the French say, vive la difference — but make the difference work for you.
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Securities and advisory services offered through Independent Financial Group, LLC, a registered broker dealer and investment advisor. Member FINRA and SIPC. Legacy Retirement Advisors and Independent Financial Group, LLC, are not affiliated.
The information in this article is not intended as tax or legal advice, and it may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. You are encouraged to seek tax or legal advice from an independent professional advisor. The content is derived from sources believed to be accurate. Neither the information presented nor any opinion expressed constitutes a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security. This material was written and prepared by Emerald. Copyright 2016 Emerald Connect, LLC.
CNNMoney, February 19, 2015
CNBC.com, December 18, 2015
The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 2015