Survey Finds Women Want More Time to Budget

The end of Daylight Saving Time means an "extra" hour for most Americans. And while the vast majority of people will use that extra hour to sleep, Fidelity Investments is suggesting a different idea: Use the time to focus on your finances.

The end of Daylight Saving Time means an “extra” hour for most Americans. And while the vast majority of people will use that extra hour to sleep, Fidelity Investments is suggesting a different idea: Use the time to focus on your finances.

To that end, the firm recently conducted a survey of women to ask how they would use an extra 60 minutes if they had to dedicate the time solely to their financial futures.

The results? Most women (42%) would use their extra hour to work on their budgets or find new ways to save. Another 24% said they’d use the time to learn how to become a better investor. Thirteen percent said they would use the time to develop a financial plan and investment strategy.

Fidelity is focusing on women for a reason. They note that most women will find themselves solely responsible for their finances at some point in their lives, such as after a divorce or after outliving a spouse. Despite that fact, the survey found nearly one-in-four women don’t take part in financial decision-making at all.

“It’s critically important that women get more engaged in their finances now, and we’re encouraging all women to use the hour we gain this weekend to get started, to ensure the money they work so hard to earn is working just as hard for them,” said Kristen Robinson, senior vice president at Fidelity.

Nearly half (45%) of respondents said they manage their financial portfolio on their own. Another 23% rely on a financial advisor, spouse, or other family member. Thirteen percent said they simply don’t worry about their finances. Meanwhile, 12% said they are in need of serious help, a statistic Fidelity says is “most concerning.”

Robinson said many women will find managing their portfolios comes naturally.

“Many women don’t realize the same attributes that have made them dedicated savers can also make them great investors, and making improvements to a financial plan is easier than they think,” she said.

Fidelity is trying to hammer home its message with the #TakeAnHour Challenge. The social media-based effort is designed to challenge women to spend an hour this weekend working on their finances. They’ve developed this quiz as a quick-start guide for those wishing to take up the challenge.