I read an article several months back, and every once in a while I think about it and still feel angry. Now, trying to find the article again, it seems to have disappeared, which is for the best.
It was an article put out by a bank, I believe, on differences in investing between men and women. I was excited to read it, because it was about me! A woman! The article profiled two people, a fictional Jack and Jane. It included the fact that Jane would generally make 79% of what Jack made, and therefore Jane would have less to invest in retirement savings, assuming they both set aside 10% of their paycheques. Jane would also have less investing years, because women tend to be the ones to take time out of their work lives to raise kids. Those years off tend to be earlier in her overall investing profile, so there is less time for those saved assets to generate income compared to her male counterparts.
All of what the article said until this point made sense. When it came to offering advice, however, this is where I got angry. I was eager to find out what tips they had for women who are facing difficulty in achieving the same kind of retirement profile as a man in a similar job. How disappointed was I, then, when the first suggestions was that Jack start a spousal RSP for his wife, Jane. WTF? Jack and Jane were married? The article never said that! The article had made some deep assumptions. i.e. That all women are obviously married to a man, and that even in 2018, women’s financial stability must rely on being married to a man with a great job.
As a single mom, who is not economically tied to a man, I found the initial statistics depressing, and the subsequent advice to be disheartening, to say the least.
“Marry well, ladies” is not a satisfying long term solution to financial gender inequality in 2018. Please, please, mutual fund industry, check yo’self.