Investing has traditionally been a male arena because women are often just too scared to dabble in stocks. When they do get into it they are cautious and unwilling to take risks, often settling for safe investments such as Treasury bonds or unit trusts managed by a professional. Men, on the other hand, enjoy investing more, often do it themselves and take higher risks such as trading on a hot tip.
These different approaches to investment are playing out in the ever popular investment groups especially the ones with mixed gender. Chris Karumba, a member of Domani which has 18 members aged 28 to 35 years, says that women members ask many questions before each new investment.
They are cautious and want a lot of background. As a result we are forced to do more research and in the process end up making a more informed decision. If it were left to the men most would have no problem just taking a risk, he says.
Various studies have tracked male and female investors and discovered that women produce better results on average. A study of more than 35,000 discount-brokerage customers by economists at the University of California at Davis found that between 1991 and 1997, womens portfolios earned, on average, 1.4 percentage points more than mens annually.
Written by Wanjiru Waithaka