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Factors in Obtaining Wealth Different for Men and Women

Men and women have slight differences in how they obtained their wealth.

| BY Kent McDill

Wealthy men and wealthy women have something in common: they are both wealthy.

But there are differences in how they obtained their wealth, according to Spectrem’s report Investment Attitudes and Behaviors of High Net Worth Women versus High Net Worth Men.

The study looks at behaviors of affluent investors from three different wealth levels: Mass Affluent (with a net worth of $100,000 to $1 million Not Including Primary Residence), Millionaire (net worth of $1 million to $5 million NIPR), and Ultra High Net Worth (net worth of $5 million to $25 million NIPR).

Both wealthy men and wealthy women credit “hard work’’ as the primary factor in obtaining wealth (95 percent of men and 93 percent of women).  That number is higher among the wealthier investors, starting at 92 percent for Mass Affluent men and women, and climbing to 98 percent for UHNW men and 95 percent for UHNW women.

Men cite “education” as the next most important factor. Eighty-three percent of men said education was a factor, with only 74 percent of Mass Affluent selecting education and 86 percent of Millionaires and 91 percent of UHNW male investors doing so.

“Education’’ and “frugality” were each selected by 79 percent of women, although UHNW women felt differently than the average. Only 72 percent of UHNW women chose “frugality” while“85 percent of UHNW women chose “education.”

For men, “frugality’’ finished just behind “smart investing’’ overall, (76 percent to 77 percent). The only other factor chosen by at least 50 percent of men was “taking risk” at 61 percent, although that number ranged from 52 percent for Mass Affluent men to 69 percent for UHNW men.

For women, “smart investing” was the fourth-most popular choice at 74 percent, again ranging from 66 percent for Mass Affluent women, 82 percent for Millionaire women and 89 percent for UHNW women.

Two factors that don’t involve personal performance were “inheritance’’ and “luck.” Twenty-five percent of men selected “inheritance” and 39 percent selected “luck.” For women, 33 percent selected “inheritance’’ and 32 percent selected “luck”.

However, 55 percent of UHNW men and 49 percent of UHNW women said “luck’’ was a factor, and 43 percent of women said “inheritance” was a factor.

About the Author

Kent McDill

Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.

In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.

McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.

McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy  Buffett and all things Disney.