Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


ASB Reveals New Zealand’s Financial Wellbeing Gender Divide

  • Women better off day to day but miss out on $750 million at retirement: ASB reveals New Zealand’s financial wellbeing gender divide
  • Despite a 9% gender pay gap, Kiwi women have better everyday financial wellbeing than men, as they spend less and save more.
  • Despite saving more, women’s KiwiSaver balances are 12% lower at retirement due to lower pay and less appetite for risk.
  • If Kiwi women invested their additional bank savings in the right KiwiSaver fund for their goals, they could collectively unlock three quarters of a billion more at retirement.

Financial data from more than half a million ASB personal banking customers has revealed that on average Kiwi women are 2% financially better off day to day than men. This is despite earning 9% less on average, as men erode their pay advantage by spending 8% more.

Developed with the University of Melbourne’s Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, the ongoing ASB study of spending, saving and credit behaviour gives insight into New Zealanders’ financial wellbeing, analysing the extent to which Kiwis have financial freedom, security and control.

ASB customer data for the year to 31 May 2021 demonstrated women trump men on all saving measures studied. They’re more likely to have a savings account and typically hold $600 more in savings. One in three women had at least $10,000 set aside and the study also showed fewer women live payday to payday, miss payments or fall into unarranged debt.

While women fared well on everyday money measures, ASB cautions this is not the full story, as the gender divide reverses when it comes to retirement savings. Analysis of ASB KiwiSaver Scheme data shows women withdrawing from their KiwiSaver at retirement have balances 12% lower than men. Women not only earn less on average, but typically take more time out from paid work through maternity and family commitments, which impacts earnings, KiwiSaver contributions and ultimately retirement balances.

ASB found that on average women hold more in savings in the bank than men, but they’re not capitalising on this advantage long term. Projections show that if these additional savings were invested in an appropriate KiwiSaver fund, women aged 35-65 could collectively boost their retirement funds by around $750 million.

ASB Chief Executive Officer Vittoria Shortt said while it’s remarkable to see how resourceful Kiwi women are with less, having a long-term plan is fundamental to a healthy financial future.

“ASB’s independent Investor Confidence and KiwiSaver surveys tell us women rate their knowledge of investing far lower than men and are more likely to be in the most risk-averse KiwiSaver funds, regardless of their personal circumstances or goals, which can mean they’re missing out on investment gains over time,” Ms Shortt said.

“Our study makes it clear that what we do with our money has a greater impact on financial wellbeing than income alone. Setting money aside for tough times is the most important thing Kiwis can do to improve their immediate financial wellbeing, but longer-term planning is vital too.

“Knowing where to start is key. ASB has made it easier for customers to assess their financial situation, set goals and take practical steps to reach them, with specialist advice and support available through our smart digital tools, expert banking advisors and KiwiSaver specialists.

“ASB is here to support Kiwis towards a better financial future, and we encourage customers to speak with us about how we can help them make the most of their money – today and tomorrow.”


Note to Editors:

ASB’s financial wellbeing research was developed in collaboration with the Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research. Financial wellbeing data is captured from customer transactions on ASB held banking products and will be shared with media quarterly. All data is anonymised and aggregated to protect the privacy of customers. The research looks at customers whose main banking relationship is with ASB (where main-bank is internally defined).

ASB’s tool to help Kiwis understand their own financial wellbeing is available on its website. This 10-question survey asks about recent and past financial experiences and generates a personal financial wellbeing score of between 1 and 100. Responses and results from the tool are anonymous.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Civil Contractors: Massive Rebound In Civil Construction Business Confidence

New Zealand’s civil construction industry is riding a massive rebound in post-pandemic business confidence – but this may be undermined by skills shortages, which continue to be the industry’s number one challenge... More>>

Energy: Feeling Our Way Towards Hydrogen - Tina Schirr

Right now hydrogen is getting a lot of attention. Many countries are focusing on producing hydrogen for fuel, or procuring it, or planning for its future use... More>>

Maritime Union: Calls For New Zealand Shipping To Resolve Supply Chain Crisis

The Maritime Union says there needs to be innovative responses to ongoing shipping congestion. Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison says it is essential that New Zealand develops its own shipping capacity... More>>

Housing: New Home Consents Continue To Break Records

A record 44,299 new homes were consented in the year ended June 2021, Stats NZ said today. “The annual number of new homes consented rose again in the June 2021 year, the fourth consecutive month of rises,” construction statistics manager Michael Heslop said... More>>

Real Estate: June Home Transfers Remain High
There were 44,517 home transfers in the June 2021 quarter, the highest June quarter figure since 2016, Stats NZ said today. The number of home transfers was very similar to the March 2021 quarter and was up 18,252 from the June 2020 quarter... More>>

Statistics: Household Saving Falls In The March 2021 Quarter

Saving by New Zealanders in the March 2021 quarter fell to its lowest level in two years after rising sharply in 2020, Stats NZ said today. Increases in household spending outpaced income growth, leading to a decline in household saving from the elevated levels that prevailed throughout 2020... More>>