At Ecsponent, we are celebrating women this August and we take a look at investment trends and provide a few tips and tricks of the trade, tailor-made for women.

We take a look at women who have made a significant contribution to the economy- both locally and internationally.

There are four noteworthy women in particular:

Locally, we take a look at Gill Marcus- she was the Governor of the South African Reserve Bank until retiring in 2014. She was the first woman to hold this position. Marcus previously served as a Non-Executive Director of Gold Fields Limited and Chair of Absa Group Limited. She was once Deputy Governor of the South African Reserve Bank and holds a degree in Industrial Psychology.

In the banking industry, Maria Ramos is the Chief Executive Officer of Barclays Africa Group Limited. Ramos has responsibility for executing the Group’s Africa strategy across 13 African operations, serving some 12 million customers through 11,910 outlets.

At the steer of things, Nicola Newton-King is Chief Executive Officer of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange Limited. She also serves as a member of the Financial Markets Advisory Board. Newton-King previously served as Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. She was one of the primary drafters of the Insider Trading Act, a world leader of its kind.

Internationally, we all know about Hillary Clinton. When she was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2001, she became the first American first lady to ever win a public office seat. She later became the 67th U.S. secretary of state in 2009, serving until 2013. In 2016, she became the first woman in U.S. history to become the presidential nominee of a major political party.


What are the most recent trends when it comes to women and investments?

Studies show that there has been an increase in the amount of investments made by women and women are also more inclined to join other groups in order to receive financial advice, and it seems more and more women are taking charge of their own finances.


Women do, however, also often tend to withdraw from family finances and investment decisions

Studies have shown that 8 out of 10 women from previous generations would have rather withdrawn from financial discussion or any decisions involving investments, however, this tendency is quickly changing. Women are now actively involved in the finances of their families, they take charge of their personal portfolios and seem to put a lot of trust into accredited financial advisors.


How can women get more involved in their own finances?

Women tend to take fewer risks and rather stick to an investment strategy, and this in turn makes them better investors. Studies have shown that women’s investments outperform those of men and they make decisions based on proper research. Knowledge is key- it will allow women to foster healthy habits and to develop their financial well-being.


Taking a look at the markets following the local elections

Largely due to the well executed local elections, the rand has closed stronger at R13.63 against the dollar and this is a very positive indication for the South African economy. The elections, however, is not the only reason for the positive movement in the rand- The Bank of eNglad has lowered their interest rates from 0.5% to 0.25%, compared to South Africa’s repo rate of 7%. Australia follows suite and lowered their interest rate from 1.5% to 1.25%.

The JSE All share index went down by 0.26% and gold is still trading between $1300 and $1400 per fine ounce.