Whether it is the way we spend and save on a daily basis, or work towards our long-term financial goals, men and women usually have a different approach towards money. This difference in outlook can be attributed to a number of factors such as distinct wants and needs, historical gender-based stereotypes, education and beliefs they were raised with, to name a few.
Here are four ways men and women differ in how they view and manage money.
Men make more money than women…
One of the most prominent differences of them all, is the fact that women are still paid less than men, even in the same job. Global salary data published by the World Economic Forum in 2015 suggests that despite dramatic changes in women’s education over the last decade, a pay scale gap still exists. And what’s shocking is that the Forum believes it will take another 118 years until this gap is closed.
Let’s talk about the UAE, how do women and men in this part of the world in particular perceive this? As per a survey conducted this year by UAE’s Ministry of Economy, 29 percent of female respondents agreed that men are paid higher than women. On the other hand, 60 percent of male respondents said they did not see any disparity in pay scales.
[Related: 5 money management tips for single women]
Men or women, who’s more financially aware?
Here’s some refreshing news. Women in the UAE are financially more literate than men, as revealed by the Standard & Poor Global Financial Literacy Survey 2015. Even though global numbers for financially literate women stand at 30 percent, 5 percent lower than men, here in the UAE, the numbers are in favor of women, at 4 percent higher than their male counterparts.
So it goes without saying that women in the country are making sound financial decisions as compared to men, and there’s no better time than now for ladies to take charge and get in control of the purse strings.
Saving & investing – Who does it better?
The Blackrock Global Investor Pulse Survey 2015 shows that ‘growing wealth’ was the primary financial goal for 37 percent of woman as compared to 39 percent of men. Although both men and women shared similar aspirations about wealth creation, they were certainly not on the same page when it came to actually working towards achieving these goals.
The survey also points out that women are more disciplined when it comes to budgeting and saving, but are less confident about investing. While 60 percent of women have a household budget in place, only 45 percent hold any investment.
Spending habits – As contrasting as Venus and Mars?
How do men and women spend their disposable income? Various studies worldwide have revealed that women spend more on fashion purchases, whereas men like to splurge on technology and gadgets. A 2015 Nielsen report showed that only 31 percent of men plan spending on clothes, compared to 38 percent of women. And only 18 percent of women would spend on gadgets, compared to 28 percent of men.
When it comes to the way we shop, more women in the UAE are traditional shoppers and haven’t adopted digital channels as fast as men have. This was pointed out in a survey last year by UAE-based retailer awok.com, which revealed that only 24 percent of UAE’s online shoppers were females.
Having said that, it’s also important to note that in today’s time, some of the obvious differences have vanished. So it isn’t fair to stereotype men and women any more, especially when it comes to how they treat money.