Trading can be exciting. It’s like holding your breath on a roller coaster and preparing to let out a scream of excitement or outright terror. It is filled with a wide range of emotions, from utter joy to sheer disappointment. It empowers us, and most importantly, it endows us with freedom, empowerment, and optionality. Every day offers a new challenge and an adrenaline rush. Trading is an energetic environment with energetic players; The field is waiting for more women to enter the game.
Get off the bench
Women in finance are a growing force. Many women are still viewers who can’t wait to get into the game but aren’t sure where to start. Ultimately, it begins with learning the rules of the game.
All games have objectives, but the trading game is not necessarily win-win. There is room for everyone, men and women, to be winners as long as they play smart. Understanding the market and how wealth is created is crucial. As with any game, women can become profitable players through practice, perfecting their technique, gaining knowledge of the market and understanding how to manage risk through trial and error. It is a step towards economic empowerment and financial freedom for women worldwide.
Subscribe to something Kiplinger’s personal finances
Be a smarter, better informed investor.
Save up to 74%
As a woman, overcoming the fear of entering the game begins with awareness. We have all learned skills and acquired knowledge in new areas. We learn a new skill, practice it, and eventually figure it out. Learning the markets works the same way. Familiarize yourself with the vocabulary, market factors, stocks, interest rates, currencies and patterns to align well. Women can do this by taking affordable beginner investing courses on sites like Coursera (opens in new tab) or Udemy (opens in new tab)or join local investment groups and associations dedicated to teaching women to invest.
Women have a clear advantage in the game. We are born multitaskers with the ability to plan for the long term, and the stock market is a long term game. Some stocks will rise and fall quickly, but you won’t ultimately lose if you plan ahead and persevere, knowing that the patterns say the curve will eventually turn back up. Even during the bear market, the stock market continued to trend higher.
The stock market can be risky for everyone involved. Research shows that women are not risk averse but are risk aware (opens in new tab). They tend to do more research into investment decisions and, when satisfied with their preparation, are more than keen on taking calculated risks. Being risk aware, cautious and intuitive are all factors that are essential to succeed in the trading game.
Creating a game plan
You must have a plan in mind before stepping onto the field. The best way to do this is to first choose the market that works for you. To help you understand markets, there are countless content creators with platforms where they serve as leaders and influencers for the finance industry, guiding more women on how to be financially savvy and tech-savvy.
I especially love the work of Nicole Casperson who started the community WTFintech? (opens in new tab)She is doing her bit to promote women in the industry. YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok are great resources that can help you learn the basics of the stock market before diving headlong into the business. Many of these content creators simplify the market into understandable terms that anyone can understand.
The next part of your game plan is to invest! Investing is a very individual process and nobody can tell you what to invest in or how much money to put in the market. Research the companies and stocks you’re interested in, follow the patterns of who’s doing well, and take a deep look at your finances to get started.
Many apps allow you to invest right from your phone, are easily accessible and offer user-friendly interfaces for beginners, allowing users to get involved and start investing right away. You can also enlist the help of a financial advisor to guide you in the desired direction.
Benefits of Participation
For personal, professional or family reasons, financial independence is crucial. In the past, women were deliberately excluded from financial decisions. Women couldn’t even have their own credit cards until the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of 1974. Consequently, these historical nuances have discouraged women from learning about money.
Most people get involved in the stock market because of the monetary income they can provide if done right. Being able to have an additional stream of income is valuable and liberating for women, especially since women are known to earn about 77 cents for every dollar a man makes (opens in new tab) in comparable employment. In the United States, black women are paid far less, earning an average of 58 cents for every dollar earned by men, according to data released by the American Association of University Women (opens in new tab)a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering women and girls.
Women who learn to create and manage their own wealth also offset the debilitating status quo of patriarchal norms that place women in lower positions of power in their careers and elsewhere relative to their male counterparts.
The benefits of learning to invest are endless and include extra income that you can set aside for things that mean the most to you like travel, family, friends, experiences, saving for retirement, or even reinvesting the money back into the market .
Navigate the road ahead
The first step in moving toward a more female-dominated trading market is to acknowledge that there is a societal perception that women are not a good fit for trading, and then focus on changing that.
What makes me so passionate about trading, and why I think it is so important for women to participate in the game, is that it greatly expands women’s access to wealth and economic empowerment without restrictions or barriers. Commerce offers women options that allow us to set up countless options for ourselves to thrive and create the life we’ve always wanted.
Ladies, it’s time to be seated at the table. let’s play the game
This article was written by and represents our contributing consultant, not the Kiplinger editorial board. You can view advisor filings with the SEC (opens in new tab) or with FINRA (opens in new tab).