A financial toolkit for women

With less super than men, longer lifespans and time spent out of work, women face unique financial challenges.

A helping hand can be all we need sometimes to get ahead with money matters, and the recent launch of ASIC’s Women’s Money Toolkit gives Australian women additional support to achieve personal financial security.

There is no shortage of research that shows women often have what it takes to be successful investors and wealth creators. A 2014 survey of adult financial literacy for example, found women are generally better than men at keeping track of their finances, and are less likely to be impulsive when it comes to managing their money.

Yet many women face unique challenges when it comes to making the most of their money.

Almost one in two (46%) women work part time compared to 17% of men. This often means a lower income as well as less going into super through employer-paid contributions. As a guide, among women aged 60-64 the average super balance is about $104,734 compared to $197,054 for men the same age. Yet women have a current life expectancy of 84 years compared to 80 among men, so on that basis women need a bigger nest egg.

In addition, our high rate of separation and divorce can derail the financial security of many women. Yes, it is possible to rebuild your finances following a relationship breakdown but it often takes time, and many divorcees—both men and women—can be unsure about where to begin.

All these issues underpinned the development of the new Women’s Money Toolkit. It’s an online resource that offers tips and tools to manage money across a range of life stages. It explains points to consider when buying a home, starting a family, caring for elderly relatives, preparing for retirement and even following the loss of a partner.

Users answer a few questions and the toolkit generates a personalised to-do list of steps that can improve their financial wellbeing. This is important because having a written roadmap of action can make it easier to get started and tick off various goals along the way.

I spent some time checking out the toolkit and it’s certainly very user-friendly and packed with useful information. It costs nothing to use the Women’s Money Toolkit, and it could be a valuable starting point for many Australian women to get more from their money. Check it out at ASIC’s MoneySmart website and speak with a professional financial adviser to make sure you’re on track for a comfortable future.

Paul Clitheroe is a founding director of financial planning firm ipac, Chairman of the Australian Government Financial Literacy Board and chief commentator for Money Magazine.

News & insights

Want to keep up with the latest news?

Sign up now

Want to keep up to date with the latest news?

Sign up now

Recommended articles

Important information

Show more

© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.