Australia and Sweden stand out from the crowd by giving equal representation to women and men on their national currency. Of course, before the polymer notes now in circulation in Australia, this was not the case; only Caroline Chisholm and the Queen of England were given pride of place on the paper bills.
Australia was ahead of the pack of many nations including the US, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa and Israel. These countries disappointingly don’t feature women anywhere on their banknotes. There are campaigns in Canada and the USA, as well as other countries, to add more women on their banknotes but at the moment, it is still a work in progress.
Having women featured on our banknotes does not mean that women in Australia are any better at managing their finances. While women are concerned about having enough money to maintain their lifestyle throughout retirement to cover their health care and outstanding debts, many are still not taking the necessary action to achieve it. And as women are increasingly earning more money and making financial decisions, they are just not seeking out financial professionals to help them manage their money in the long-term.
While they have the confidence to manage their day to day affairs, women need to transfer this confidence to help them achieve their future goals. There are some small things that can be done on a personal level to bring control back to women and inspire the necessary confidence they need.
- Diversify your investments. By choosing to do this, if one investment takes a hit then you will still have money in which to invest in other opportunities. It is never wise to invest all of your money into one house, one business or shares in one company.
- Cheap is never an option. While expensive may not be your best option either, comparing the quality of something is always smart. Quality may mean spending more today however over time, it will save you money because ultimately it will last longer.
- Don’t skimp on professionals. Trying to save a few dollars by not hiring those who know what they are doing is never a good move. Always aim for trusted and knowledgeable professionals at all times.
- Insure where necessary. If you are trying to save money, it is not recommended to cut corners on your insurance. If something happens to your home, business or health, having insurance will give peace of mind to both yourself and your wallet.
From here it is a relatively small step for women to talk to a professional to gain the knowledge they need, but for many women, it still seems like a huge leap. Over time, like the banknotes things will change. However it just isn’t happening as fast as we would like.