Us men like to think of ourselves as financial geniuses. We like to boast about our technical analysis skills, fundamental know hoe of how to pick a stock, rowdy trading trading room bonding between men, conferences on investments and the list can go on and on to stroke the egos of us men to no end. But if you look at the historical data, you would come to know that women investors have a higher rate of success than men. Men might do well being part of the financial markets as professionals but even this notion has been proven wrong time and again on Wall Street to Tokyo to Singapore. Wall Street is one of the most “Manly” places in the world. Loudly screaming, foul language using, testosterone flowing traders trying to outdo each other like mountain goats fight for their territories on top of a peak was a normality in the capital markets up until late 1980’s on Wall Street. Then came an era when Silicon Valley started to appoint women CEO’s for their venture capital funded listed companies and that was the first opportunity when rowdy men had to deal with intelligent women CEO’s. And once that door was open then Wall Street started to be flooded by women who crossed over into the capital markets as fund managers, traders, analysts, investment bankers and even as technical chartist from the corporate world into the capital markets world. And once that happened, the egotistical men dominated stock market world realized that women not only make better investors but better financial professionals.
Why ? Why do women investors make better returns than men ? That is the most pertinent question. Based on my observation, it is very simple. Women, contrary to the popular belief, have more control over their mental skill sets than men do. Women tend to be more patient. Women are in less rush to make money than men and this non-rush attitude gives them the ability to ride out the bear markets. Women also tend to have better analytical skills, they make take a long time to pick a stock but once they do, they believe in the growth of the company. Just like in our part of the world, women do not sell gold no matter how high the prices go. They would rather exchange one set of jewellery which is expensive if the prices have gone up for two sets of something else at the jewelers.
A good friend of mine, Muzammil Islam, who is the Chairman and CEO of an investment banking firm in Karachi and his wife took the first initiative to create a FB group teaching the Pakistani women how to invest. In my view it is one of the best effort i have seen in Pakistan to bring women investors into our capital markets. Through education and mutual support amongst the women themselves, we can create an army of women investors in Pakistan. A segment of investors that has never been tapped before. A few hundred thousand women investors will double to number of investors in our PSX. And these women will most probably be long term passive investors rather than panicking day traders, and that is what this market needs, long term investors who believe in the future of our economy. And when children will see their mothers investing, they will grow up being familiar with the capital markets and the absolutely absurd notion of stock markets being a place of “SATTA” will vanish into the thin air within no time. That day is not far. As equal citizens of this great country, we need more and more women to enter every field to contribute to our economy, and no better place than the capital markets of Pakistan to begin with.