Let’s celebrate International Women’s Day together. In a male-dominated world it is important to recognise female role models to inspire women to enter the world of finance. Here are five inspirational female investors who rose to the top of the finance industry.
Finance is a strongly male-dominated industry with only 19% of senior positions in the investment sector held by women (according to Catalyst Research). Entering the world of finance as a woman can be challenging, employers can underestimate, expect unreasonably high standards and be opposed to hiring us all together. The role models we will introduce go above and beyond expectations and with hard work and grit they are willing to stand out and take risks to make it in finance.
Considering women make up 50% of the world population it is crucial to include women in the workplace to raise the economic potential of a country. Inequalities have long been a barrier for women to participate in business, finance is among the top sectors for gender discrimination.
Geraldine Weiss was one of the first women to become big in finance. She grew her success by self-learning before studying business and finance. When applying to investment firms after her studies she was rejected multiple times despite being more than qualified for the role. She commented “It was a man’s world, and women need not apply,”.
After a series of rejections, Weiss decided to start her own investment newsletter in 1966. To avoid further gender discrimination, Weiss signed her newsletter “G. Weiss.” She only revealed her gender identity a decade later after proving her strategies were a huge success.
Her newsletter, Investment Quality Trends is still going today, based on Weiss’s incredibly successful value-based, dividend-oriented stock-picking strategy.
Muriel Siebert entered the world of finance as a researcher before climbing the ranks to partner before starting her own brokerage firm Muriel Siebert & Co. in 1967.
Siebert was determined to get her firm registered with the NYSE facing numerous rejections. Eventually she succeeded and her firm became the first woman-owned member of the NYSE. It is still the only national, woman-owned brokerage on the exchange.
Siebert didn’t stop there and went on to bring her financial expertise to politics, another male-dominated field. As New York State Banking Department Superintendent from 1977 to 1982, in a rocky market, she helped prevent bank failures to support the US economy.
Abby Joseph Cohen
Abby Joseph Cohen served as a Federal Reserve Board economist in 1973 before moving to work for firms such as T. Rowe Price, Barclays, and Drexel Burnham Lambert. In 1990 she joined Goldman Sachs and became a partner just 8 years later.
Cohen was listed on Forbes‘ “Most Powerful Women” celebrating successful women across all professions.
Lubna S. Olayan
Lubna Olayan probably faced the most challenging cultural barriers of all our women in finance. As a Saudi women, it is not socially acceptable for women to work let alone work in business, and back in the 80’s! Olayan gained support from her family and overcame gender discrimination to become CEO of Riyadh-based Olayan Financing Company, one of Saudi Arabia’s most prominent companies. She now employs more than 540 women in her company and constantly campaigns women in the workforce.
Linda Bradford Raschke
Last but not least, we explore Linda Raschke’s achievement to become president of not one, but two financial firms that bear her initials: LBRGroup, Inc. and LBR Asset Management. After kicking off her career in the early 80’s Raschke has constantly challenged a male-dominated workforce. Starting as a market maker and then becoming a day trader Raschke has had all the experience needed to write her popular book on high probability trading strategies. She has also lectured on trading at Bloomberg.
Being a woman in finance means high pressure, but also high visibility. Many women in finance still face gender discrimination and lower pay for comparable work. Take inspiration from these women to start changing a male-dominated industry. If you are ready to start trading, we recommend eToro and easyMarkets for beginners.