Millennial women ages 25 to 34 had the highest interest among all age groups in learning about personal finance topics, including financial planning and investing, complex financial concepts and retirement planning, a recent survey by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America found.
Sixty-nine percent of millennial women were interested in learning about “financial planning and investing” versus 65 percent for ages 35 to 44.
Also, 57 percent of millennial women were interested in “learning complex financial topics like compound interest, market capitalization, debt ratios and bond ratings,” followed closely by 56 percent for ages 45 to 54.
Allianz found that younger women had a significantly higher interest in retirement planning than the next closest age group, with 77 percent of millennial women interested versus 66 percent for the next highest group, ages 35 to 44.
However, the study found that many young women lack the professional guidance to help them take the next step. Millennial women reported the lowest level of professional guidance, with more than eight in 10 (84 percent) saying they currently do not work with a financial professional.
Many millennial women cited their relationship status as a major factor keeping them from serious financial planning. Nearly half (49 percent) said that being single allowed them to put off any serious thinking about financial planning.
Those in a relationship were also taking less responsibility, with 39 percent of millennial respondents saying they let their husband/partner do the investing, the highest among all age groups.
“It’s encouraging to see younger women so interested in personal finance, but these women really need to follow up that curiosity with an action plan that will help them feel more secure,” said Katie Libbe, vice president of Consumer Insights for Allianz Life.
According to Libbe, millennial women can take specific steps to gain confidence with financial planning, such as setting a budget and saving now to reap the potential benefits of compounding. She also suggests contributing enough money to their employers retirement plan to maximize the company’s 401(k) match.
Libbe says many people in this age group feel they don’t have enough money to work with a financial professional. She suggests they research and interview potential candidates to find an advisor that’s a right fit for their situation.
The 2013 Women, Money & Power Study was conducted with more than 2,000 women ages 25 to 75 with a minimum household income of $30,000 a year.