The Difference Between Men & Women…in Investing

For over 20 years, I’ve been baffled.

Sure, we women have become excellent dollar watchers and bargain hunters. But investors? Forget about it. We want to learn, but lack the confidence to act.

And here’s what’s really baffling. Once women enter in the market, we’re actually better investors than men.  Key findings in a recent article on The Motley Fool, ( show that “female investors earn better returns than men—up to 1% in some studies and, on average, women lost 2.5% of their stock portfolio value in 2015, while men lost 3.8%.”

But, women are still less confident than men in their investing ability. Only 9% of women think they make better investors than men according a Fidelity report.

What’s up with this??? The answer, I’ve discovered, lies in our brain.

Women and men’s brains are different and process information differently. 

Men see investment risk as a challenge.

Women see investment risk as a threat.

Men measure success by beating an index or their peers. Women measure success by meeting their goals and helping others.

Men, in their competitiveness, trade stocks frequently. Women, with our lack confidence, tend to buy and hold. A much better strategy over time.

Here’s the irony. Our lack of confidence actually works in our favor. The more I study neuroscience, the more I’m convinced. Rather than avoiding investing because it feels like a threat, let’s focus on rewiring our brains to become confident investors.

What’s your confidence level in your investing skill? What can you do to improve it? Leave me a comment below.

Comments & Feedback

  • Ros

    I have been working on and improving my super (401K for Oz) investments and have built some confidence in my skills and yesterday went to my first shares webinar. Slowly , slowly 😊

  • barbara huson

    You’re making wonderful progress, Ros! Slow and steady is the best strategy for success!!! Thanks for sharing.

  • Barbara

    I have ups and downs with investing. But, I’ve kept at it over the years and mostly with Motley Fool info. I do sell occasionally, but mostly buy and hold long-term. Here’s the weird thing. I hadn’t looked at my stocks for a while (and I have only stocks … nothing else) and when I looked at the total, I wasn’t sure how to read it!!! That’s because it was over a million dollars!!! Numbers that big seem to be beyond me. Of course, I realize that when the market drops substantially, it may no longer be that high. But, it got me that I wasn’t even sure that it could be in that range.

    • Lisa


      Congratulations on achieving over a million on your stock portfolio!!! Your patience and diligence has paid off!

      Is there a particular stock you’ve been surprised about?

  • Lisa

    Can’t work out why I do this. I’m good at researching an investment based on news, statistics, expert opinion and my gut feeling. I save money, then procrastinate, then resist a little bit before making the transaction. After I FINALLY do it I feel great. Maybe I’m scared of leaving myself short money, even though I have cash stashed away.

  • Paula

    I’m ignorant about investing but I put a few dollars in The stocks are increasing in value, but when I tried to take out some $$, I wasn’t able to. I know it’s not smart but if I do want to get $ out, how do I do it? Do I have to sell the whole thing?

    • barbara huson

      This may sound obvious, Paula, but did you call Stockpile and talk to someone? You should never have to sell all your holdings and you should absolutely be able to sell what you need. Please do some more research. And let me know what happens.

  • Carmen

    So far I have the believe that I do not have enough money to invest. This is something I want to change. I also want to cut debting to zero and save money every month.

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Meet Barbara Huson

When a devastating financial crisis rocked her world, Barbara Huson knew she had to get smart about money… and she did. Now, she wants to empower every women to take charge of their money and take charge of their lives! She’s doing just that with her best-selling books, life changing retreats and private financial coaching.

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