Women in investment banking: survey

Gender diversity in the industry, especially the investment banking industry is improving, but many more changes need to take place

In a recent survey, on the subject of gender diversity, CFA Institute—the global association of investment professionals—finds that while women have made gains in the industry, more needs to be done.

In the report, Gender Diversity in Investment Management (read it here: http://cfa.is/WIMreport), it found that while women are under-represented at every level of investment management, the disparity can be remedied by focusing on:

•Providing young women early exposure to the investment industry

•Emphasising to all investors the positive impact that gender diversity can have on investment performance

•Bridging the work-life balance gap that disproportionately affects women.

The study found that majority of individual and institutional investors expect better investment performance from a gender-diverse team of professionals.

However, almost half of the respondents do not believe that gender diversity is a significant issue in investment management. This is one of the likeliest reasons why women are so under-represented. The top women investment professionals hold only 9.8% of chief executive officer roles, 10.2% of chief investment officer roles, 11% of chief financial officer roles, 14.9% of portfolio managers, 15.1% of investment consultants and 17.3% of personal financial advisers or planners.

The gender gap in the investment management can also be explained by the divide that happens in the homes of investment industry professionals. About 66% of women say they were responsible for 50% or more of family care, versus 22.4% of men. The survey does point to one bright spot—while the investment industry is demanding, its flexibility is a little known benefit.

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