According to the 2013 Women, Money & Power Study from Allianz Life, more than 6 in 10 women (62%) said they had an interest in learning about financial planning, retirement planning and investing. This is nearly double the amount (35%) who indicated interest in these topics during the original study conducted in 2006.
However, the study adds that despite innovations within the financial services industry, 70% of all women said they believed financial information was hard to understand, up significantly from the 44% who felt that way during the initial study.
The 2013 study, conducted with more than 2,000 women ages 25 to 75 with a minimum household income of $30,000 a year, also found that 68% of women felt financial planning materials were dull and boring. Additionally, 54% said financial material “seems like it’s in a foreign language,” and a full 40% said that none of the information was “applicable or useful.”
Surprisingly, despite indications that women want to learn and want help translating financial material, 69% of women do not see their financial professional as a “go-to” source for information about how to save, spend and invest.
In fact, only 38% of women noted they had a financial professional. Of those who had a financial professional, more than a third (38%) said their financial professional was “not very responsive” or “doesn’t seem all that interested in my personal situation” (40%).
“It’s definitely concerning that the financial services industry doesn’t seem to have learned much in the last seven years about customizing solutions to female clients,” Allianz Life vice president of consumer insights Katie Libbe said in a statement. “Women are in more financial control than ever before, and regardless of their high level of interest in learning about financial topics, the information and planning resources made available aren’t doing enough to change negative perceptions about the industry.”
Retirement Planning: Who to Trust?
According to the results, women feel more empowered about financial planning and are more responsible for financial decisions than ever before. More than 90% of women said they felt that they need to be significantly more involved in financial planning than in the past. They also report that they are equally responsible for major investment decisions and retirement planning in their household (57%).