How Millennial Women *Really* Invest Their Money

by Natalia Lusinski

Money is a feminist issue — and yet, women are still reluctant to talk about it. According to a recent Bustle survey of more than 1,000 Millennial women, more than 50 percent of people said they never discuss personal finances with friends, even though 28 percent reported feeling stressed out about money every single day. Bustle's Get Money series gets real about what Millennial women are doing with their money, and why — because managing your finances should feel empowering, not intimidating.

Everyone saves money in different ways. While some millennial women use a savings account, others use 401(k)s. Recently, investment platform Stash revealed findings from their First Financial Literacy Survey to see how people invest their money. Among 5,931 millennial females, they found that most invest something, but the numbers could be higher. (Let's be honest — couldn't they always?)

What are the main things millennial women are investing in anyway? "Millennial women are investing for retirement, homes, and vacations, which isn't all that surprising," Brandon Krieg, Stash's CEO, tells Bustle. "But, shockingly, only 48 percent are using a 401(k) to save their money and only 1 percent had a taxable investment account. It's never too early to start investing, and you don't need much to invest in your future. It's important that millennials go beyond the common YOLO mentality and start preparing for their older years — even starting with $5 is better than investing nothing at all."

OK, I don't know about you, but Krieg makes a great point. After all, every $5 saved adds up, right? Below are more findings from Stash's survey on how millennial women invest their money, and it also reveals their know-how when it comes to topics like stocks and portfolios.


How Much Millennial Females Invest Each Year

Before I tell you what Stash discovered about millennial females' investing habits, do you have a guess as to how much they invest each year? The good news is, most invest some money, but the bad news is, the amounts are pretty low.

  • $1-100 invested annually – 32 percent
  • $101-500 invested annually – 22 percent
  • $501-1,000 invested annually – 11 percent
  • $1,001-5,000 invested annually – 12 percent
  • Over $5,000 invested annually – 5 percent

However, the survey found that 18 percent of millennial women invest nothing (!). Which category do ~you~ fall into?


How Millennial Females Are Saving For The Future

Many millennial women save money, whether it's for an emergency fund or money they put toward their 401(k). But for the DL on how much money goes where, Stash found the following.

  • 401(k) – 48 percent
  • Savings account – 21 percent
  • Other savings – 7 percent
  • 529 plan – 3 percent
  • Taxable investment account – 1 percent

And how many millennial women are NOT saving? Fifteen percent, the Stash survey found.


What Millennial Women Are Saving For

You may wonder what female millennials are saving money for — I know I was! Here's what Stash found out.

  • Retirement – 58 percent
  • Buying a home – 44 percent
  • Vacation – 35 percent
  • College – 19 percent
  • Buying a car – 19 percent
  • Wedding – 14 percent
  • Health care – 9 percent

Can you relate to any of the above?


The Safest Way To Invest $1,000, According To Millennial Women

The survey options were:

  • Put your money in more than one investment.
  • Put your money in one investment.
  • Don't know.

Eighty-four percent answered correctly, "Put your money in more than one investment," whereas 16 percent did not.


What About Company Stock?

When millennial women were asked if buying a single company's stock generally provides a lower risk return than an equity exchange-traded fund — true or false — the answer was false. Forty-four percent answered correctly, whereas 56 percent did not.

Interesting results, right? You can take Stash's Financial Literacy Quiz for yourself, too. After all, it's no risk for a big reward — seeing what finance areas you have more expertise in than others. And I think many people can probably use as many accurate financial tricks and tips as they can get, right?

Check out the “Get Money” stream in the Bustle App for more tips and tricks on how to save and spend your money.