The savings gender gap: women more proactive but men save more cash

The Momentum UK Team 03 August 2012

Although more women are opening savings accounts than men, the value of men’s savings tends to be far higher, according to recent research by Halifax.

For the month of July, women took the majority of all savings accounts offered by Halifax - 57% of all fixed term savings accounts, 55% of instant access accounts and 55% of cash isas.

However it was men with the bigger opening deposits, taking out their variable savings accounts with an average balance of £8,936, 17% higher than women who opened theirs with around £7,664.

Men saving more across the board

Savings accounts are not the only financial product which see males putting away more than females. A recent report by Prudential highlighted that women are also saving considerably less for their pensions than men.

Men with defined contribution pension schemes are putting in an average of £170 per month compared to women’s contributions of £90 a month. For private pensions, women are saving £185 each whereas men are paying in an average of £330.

Three in ten men claim that that do not have any pension savings compared to four in ten women. Deirdre Flood, Senior Operations Director for Prudential commented:

“Women should be saving more because they live longer than men. We must help women access the information advice they need, whether that is through IFAs, the Pensions Advisory Service or other organisations, to make sure they have a secure retirement.”

Earning inequalities

The reasons for the gender gap in savings could simply be due to the fact that on average men are earning over £5,000 more than women each year.

For the year 2011, The Office of National Statistics’ Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) found that the median gross salary for men was £28,400, 23% higher than women at £22,900.

Female unemployment has also been rising significantly higher than male unemployment for the last quarters which is also likely to have had a dampening effect on women’s savings pots.