• Women see money as a tool to effect change and recognize the importance of their participation in financial decisions as a path to greater impact
  • Millennial women are more committed than before to using finances to fulfill their purpose

New York, NY, May 12, 2021 – The impact of COVID-19, social activism and economic and geopolitical uncertainty over the last two years have motivated women to use their investments, purchasing power and career choices to drive greater change, according to UBS’s latest Own Your Worth report.

Of the 1,400 women surveyed, nine out of 10 believe money is a tool that can be used to help achieve their purpose. Most women (94%) donated financial resources or volunteered their time in the last 12 months, nearly three quarters (73%) made purchases that align with their values, and more than two-thirds (69%) chose a career that aligns with their values.

“Women’s commitment to leading meaningful lives coupled with their growing financial clout are the twin engines that can propel them to make an even greater impact,” said Paula Polito, Vice Chairwoman, Global Wealth Management at UBS. ”More than 82 percent of women say the events of the last two years made them reassess what’s important, and that catalyst will drive more meaningful change for causes they champion and for society overall.”

Women taking the lead on financial decisions are on the rise

While the proportion of women who defer investment decisions to their spouses remains stubbornly high (51%), there has been progress in the number of women who lead on financial decisions (26%, up from 21% in 2018). Women who take the lead have found a variety of ways to make a positive impact on the world beyond charitable giving.

Among women who lead, nearly two thirds (66%) hold ESG investments and 54% invest in venture capital companies focused on a specific issue they support, compared to only 40% and 31% of women who are not leading financial decisions, respectively.

“As women seek to live more purposeful lives, we’re seeing them look beyond investing to drive change,” said Carey Shuffman, Head of the Women’s Segment at UBS Global Wealth Management. “We found that 51% of married women defer financial decisions to their spouses, yet nearly all women are engaged in charitable giving. If more women could make their voices heard in financial planning conversations, their values-based approach could make an even greater positive impact on themselves, their loved ones and the world.”

The report also shows that most women recognize the power of financial engagement—92% believe involvement in long-term financial planning can enable them to make greater impact in the world, and eight in 10 women believe they can pursue a more meaningful life without sacrificing their own financial well-being.

Millennial women are more committed than before to using finances to fulfill their purpose

The pandemic prompted a higher proportion of millennial women to use their money to fulfill their purpose and create positive change (83%), compared to Gen X (62%) and Baby Boomers (38%). More than half of Millennial women surveyed (52%) have ensured their investments align with their values, compared to 24% of Boomer women. As a result of the past two years, Millennial women are also twice as likely to intentionally buy from companies that have a positive environmental or social impact, and four in ten (41%) have changed careers to find more meaningful work, compared to just one in ten (11%) of Boomer women.

About the survey

For this publication, UBS surveyed 1,400 women investors across the United States from January 24 – February 7, 2022. Those between ages 25-30 had at least $250k in investable assets, those 31-39 had at least $500k in investable assets and those 40 and older had at least $1 million in investable assets. All data included in this report are based on UBS proprietary research unless otherwise noted.

To learn about previous reports in the series, visit: https://www.ubs.com/women.

Notes to Editors

About UBS Global Wealth Management

As the largest truly global wealth manager, UBS Global Wealth Management provides comprehensive advice, solutions and services to wealthy families and individuals around the world. Clients who work with UBS benefit from a fully integrated set of wealth management capabilities and expertise, including wealth planning, investment management, capital markets, banking, lending and institutional and corporate financial advice.

About UBS

UBS provides financial advice and solutions to wealthy, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as private clients in Switzerland. UBS is the largest truly global wealth manager, and a leading personal and corporate bank in Switzerland, with a large-scale and diversified global asset manager and a focused investment bank. The bank focuses on businesses that have a strong competitive position in their targeted markets, are capital efficient, and have an attractive long-term structural growth or profitability outlook.

UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in more than 50 regions and locations, with about 30% of its employees working in the Americas, 30% in Switzerland, 19% in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 21% in Asia Pacific. UBS Group AG employs more than 72,000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).