Banks risk losing lioness’ share of $2.4tr
Financial services that don’t tailor their products to women could miss out on the bulk of the biggest intergenerational transfer of wealth in Australian history.
During the next three decades, female financial firepower will grow significantly, with baby boomers and their parents set to pass down $2.4 trillion in inheritance.
Women will be the main beneficiaries of this bounty, simply due to the biological fact that they live longer than men, ING executive director of customer delivery Lisa Claes says.
“I think it’s money to be won,” she said.
“The (organisations) that nuance their offerings to appeal to a female investment appetite are going to get the biggest share of it.”
But Ms Claes said financial products are currently developed and marketed through a male lens, seen most clearly in advertising.
Women in mainstream media are rarely portrayed as investors or budget number crunchers, she said.
“Rather, you see them spray and wiping the kitchen, cleaning windows or cooking the family meal,” she said.
Yet the study commissioned by ING found 93 per cent of women are either the main financial decision-maker or joint decision-maker in their household.
The disconnect isn’t surprising given the study found less than five per cent of financial services CEOs are women, and they hold only 24 per cent of key management roles.
“These ratios are in gross disproportion to the composition of their customer base,” Ms Claes said.
“We need a healthy representation of mature women in research and development focus groups for the industry to better cater to their needs.”
The report found that women are more conservative investors than men, and would rather trade in a higher return for the certainty of money lasting.
“They’re more concerned with making it last than watching it grow,” Ms Claes said.
“So this `one size fits all’ mentality has got to change.”