Women, Financial Independence and Freedom - Part 1

From Karlee Hoog-Antink, Elders Financial Planning Mackay

Forging a successful career, raising well-adjusted children, travelling the world, retiring comfortably – can women really afford to do it all?

Are we set up to prosper?

This familiar concept of 'having it all' remains incredibly relevant today. As Australian women, our roles have changed and grown over the last 100 years. Women make up 44% of the Australian labour force, and are responsible for purchasing 80% of consumer goods.*

Globally, women control $26 trillion of a total $35 trillion in consumer spending. In addition to this, the total aggregated pay of women is expected to overtake men's by 2020.^ This change has not gone unnoticed.

The term, 'Womenomics’, has been coined to describe this shift of power for women.

However, where Australian women's financial literacy and independence are concerned, the ball has been well and truly dropped. In fact, the ball would have disintegrated by now.

A survey conducted by the Australian Government found that women are less likely than men to have personally thought about long-term financial plans for the future, and for their retirement. Women are also more likely than men to say that nothing they do will make a big difference to their financial situation. 

How do things currently stand for women financially?

Is the gender pay gap really closing?

What about women who are unable to work, due to caregiving commitments or other reasons?

Most importantly, how does the future look for women in Australia where financial literacy is concerned? And how could they benefit from access to quality financial advice?

I will analyse and discuss this complex area in a number of articles over the coming months. This is a personal area of interest for me, as a financial adviser who is passionate about empowering women, and also as an Australian woman who is hopeful about our future.