A Publication of WTVP

When it comes to investing, many women take a stay-the-course approach that research shows can give them an advantage over their male counterparts.

Typically, men are more likely to want to shake things up with their investments, and that can be counterproductive. Men love to tinker with things. Risk stimulates them. Their buddies give them tips or they read an article in the Wall Street Journal, and they want to do something.

Women tend to make careful choices up front, and then leave their money alone. Often, when I look at a husband and wife’s IRAs, I’ll see that after 20 years she has accrued substantially more capital than he has, and he was the one doing all the active management.

One study by SigFig, an online portfolio manager, showed that over a 12-month period ending in early 2015, women investors beat men by a 12 percent average. Men were also 25 percent more likely to lose money in the market, the study reported.

Many active investors brag about their latest wins, but just like gamblers, they don’t talk about their losses. If you look at the tax return of a typical active investor, and see how much money their investments made for them after taxes, you often find a story that’s not so compelling.

Several factors probably lure men into thinking that constant churning of the portfolio is the smart investing option, he says. For whatever reason, the same factors don’t entice women to a similar degree. Among those factors are:

It’s essential that both the client and the advisor have clear expectations from the start. Many people, for example, are under the impression that it’s the financial advisor’s job to beat the market. Not so. No advisor – at least no ethical one – can promise market-beating returns.

Instead, the advisor’s role includes understanding a client’s life goals, assessing risk factors and putting together a blueprint that addresses the client’s needs.

The advisor also acts as a support system. In times of stress or down markets, the advisor can say, “Just hang tight. Be patient. Stick to the plan.” iBi

Mark Chandik, president and chief investment officer of FDP Wealth Management, is the author of “10 Financial Strategies for the Smart Investor” ( He has more than 30 years of wealth-advising experience.