June 19, 2024

Women & finance: Study shows women prefer fixed deposits over gold, mutual funds, stocks

A recent study tracking the investment habits of urban women showed that women earning in metropolitan cities still prefer to allocate their funds in low-risk investments, such as fixed deposits and savings account. The study, Women and Finance, compiled by DBS Bank India and CRISIL, noted that women park 51 per cent of their funds in fixed deposits (FD) and savings accounts. This is followed by investment in gold 16 per cent, mutual funds 15 per cent, real estate 10 per cent, and a mere 7 per cent in stocks. 

The existence of dependents significantly influences investment behaviour. Approximately 43 per cent of married women with dependents allocate 10-29 per cent of their income to investments, the study noted. In contrast, a quarter of married women without dependents opt to invest more than half of their income. 

The study further noted that 47 per cent of women make financial decisions on their own, reflecting the momentum in financial independence. Around 65 per cent of women aged over 45 years make financial decisions independently compared with 41 per cent aged 25-35 years. 

The study also analysed how women use different banking and payment channels. Around 33 per cent of individuals between the ages of 25 and 35 prefer using UPI for online shopping, while only 22 per cent of those over 45 years old choose UPI. 

The report highlighted that UPI is the preferred choice for urban women when it comes to different payment needs. This includes money transfers (38 per cent), utility bills (34 per cent), and e-commerce purchases (29 per cent). 

This shift indicates a decreasing dependence on cash. However, there are noticeable regional differences. For instance, in Delhi, only 2 per cent of women opt for cash payments, whereas in Kolkata, 43 per cent of women prefer this method. 

Financial decisions 

The study noted that the decision-making trends vary with women’s age, affluence, regional context, and their family and employment situations. In Chennai, around 72 per cent of women were found to be making financial decisions confidently. In contrast, Coimbatore, despite its economic growth, has only 31 per cent of its women taking financial decisions independently. 

In Delhi NCR, 65 per cent of women steer their own financial decisions, driven by Delhi’s cosmopolitan culture and myriad opportunities. However, Gurugram, presents a contrasting picture with only 44 per cent of women taking independent financial decisions. 

Also read: Tax-saving investments: Bank Fixed Deposit schemes with up to 7% interest rate that can help you save taxes

Also read: Senior citizen investment tools: Senior Citizen Savings Scheme vs FDs for seniors, which one is better

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