Invest with more confidence
In an instant response audience survey during the recent Vanguard webcast, 37 percent of women respondents said they were "not at all confident" about their investment decisions, while nearly 50 percent said they were "somewhat" confident and only 13 percent said they were "very" confident.
But that gap in investment savvy may not be as wide as women perceive it to be.
"Women have a lot of the basic building blocks to be great investors," Risi says. "They focus on goals. They don't get distracted by near-term market volatility the way men sometimes do."
Women are generally less interested than men in learning about things like expense ratios and the performance histories of individual securities, according to Risi. Instead of performance metrics, they are more focused on progress toward a financial goal.
Dorie Fain, founder and CEO of &Wealth, a New York-based boutique financial advisory firm catering to women, says there's another factor at play when it comes to women's investment confidence.
"To some degree, I think it has to do with the way that the industry tends to make financial information overly complicated," Fain says. "With a good amount of education and proper context, relating the investment process to their personal goals, I find that women make excellent investment decisions."