Can women financiers reshape the world around them through financial markets? When you think of the world of finance and who works in it, the prevailing stereotype tends to be that of charging young male financiers. Dare-devil who embraces risks and lives their life at full volume. However, there are women in the same financial markets as men who are movers and shakers in the financing industry.
World Bank Vice President and Treasurer: Arunma Oteh.
World Bank Former Vice President and Treasurer, Arunmah Oteh, whose CV included 17 years at Africa Development Bank and Director General of Nigeria’s Securities and Exchange Commissions. She has, therefore, worked in the financial industry for decades.
Her first job after university was for an investment bank in Nigeria, and she was the only woman in the team. However, she felt lucky that she wasn’t the only woman in the office having to come from a gender-neutral home perspective. She, therefore, worked toward being the best. Years later, when she went to the US for studies in 1998, she faced the sports analogy. Sports Analogy is whereby people assume you know baseball; you have a team and all of the male talk. Despite all this, she enjoyed the idea that female financiers could excel in an environment where they considered outsiders. She believes that despite the biases everybody associates with doing well.
The Lehman Brothers’ Financial Crisis, 2008.
The Lehman sisters’ hypothesis refers to the Collapse of Lehman Brothers Bank, September 2008. The hypothesis would be that if it had been the Lehman Sisters’, which is to say that if had it been staffed by more women, it wouldn’t have collapsed. This is because societies tend to think women are more careful.
These are some of the stereotypes the world carries. Arunma thinks that there are both greedy men and greedy women. She also adds that the background and incentives do determine who you will be. However, the stereotypes are there for a reason because women do take more calculated risks while being nurturing. Women also tend to think of the impact of what they do. Adding that women have a more holistic approach while men lean more toward the myopic approach of focusing on profit maximization.
Effects of Closing the Equality Gender Gap
The impact of women who accessed small loans on their children and families was huge, bearing in mind that they are considered a burden. The World Bank released research supporting that if women were running the same as men in their lifetime, they would add $160 trillion to the wealth in the world. This is because women do chores that do not bear economic value. To this day, women tend to spend 70 billion hours per year on fetching water; if water were more available, women would focus more on paid work.
If the gender equality gap is closed between men and women, the world could add $28 trillion to the world GDP. It makes economic sense to focus on women because they tend to invest in education and lean towards serving the community more. Women and men financiers both have different contributions. They, therefore, complement each other.
What Can We Do More Towards Gender?
The World Bank lends to governments, which means that the county’s public financial management must be of appropriate standards. The World Bank provides support in its lending. It lends in infrastructure, agriculture, education, among others. The world Bank also offers the opportunity to bring more resources by providing innovative products to resolve a particular issue in countries, especially that affect women and the community more.
However, we need to start thinking beyond this and create truly innovative financial products where we do not need government backing up. This will, in turn, let private sectors be able to tap into these innovations. This is also the first step towards pushing partnerships where different partners can contribute without owning shares. The last step is leveraging each other to places that some sectors do not reach. Leveraging each other will help these sectors make more money through the World Bank being a granter. The world Bank should find a way of cartelizing the markets and finally creating more partners.