News and Commentary

8 Tips to Help Women Improve Financial Literacy by Kathleen Marteney, CRPC

For too long, women were socialized to believe that they were bad with money or that financial management was a role better left to their husbands. While women have come a long way, there remains a significant gender gap in financial literacy.

According to the results of a recent study conducted by the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center at the George Washington University School of Business, women are less likely than men to provide correct answers to questions about basic financial concepts and more likely than men to admit that they do not know the answer to such questions. This lack of self-confidence in women’s abilities to manage money is alarming, especially considering that women tend to live longer than men.

Ninety percent of women will need to be self-reliant with financial decisions at some point in their lives, due to late-in-life marriage, divorce or widowhood. Rather than sitting on the sidelines, women of all ages should get in the game and start to take responsibility for their long-term financial success, now, before divorce or a spouse’s death results in financial surprise in the future. Here are some tips to help get started:

  1. Be actively engaged in pursuing knowledge and building financial self-confidence.
  2. Ask questions and begin a conversation about personal finance by focusing on a topic on which you feel comfortable and to which you can relate easily.
  3. Be involved in financial decisions that can affect you or your family.
  4. Pay yourself first by participating in an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Or, if you are self-employed or are a stay-at-home parent, create a retirement plan that you can contribute to for your future.
  5. Spend less than you earn.
  6. Build an emergency fund equal to three- to six-months of expenses.
  7. Set short- and long-term goals and develop an estate plan, including a will, which you can review regularly to ensure it continues to meet your needs and life circumstances.
  8. Seek the guidance of experienced financial advisors who you can trust to guide you through the process and help you make the decisions that are key to your long-term financial success.

About the Author: Kathleen Marteney, CRPC, is a financial planner with Provenance Wealth Advisors, an Independent Registered Investment Advisor affiliated with Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors and Accountants, and a registered representative with Raymond James Financial Services. She can be reached at 800-737-8804 or via email at

Provenance Wealth Advisors, 515 E. Las Olas Blvd., Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301 (954) 712-8888.

Kathleen Montgomery is a registered representative of and offers securities through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., Member FINRA/SIPC.


Raymond James is not affiliated with and does not endorse the opinions or services of Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors and Accountants. PWA is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services. Investment Advisory Services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc., and Provenance Wealth Advisors.

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