BNY Mellon Investment Management: It's time to create a more inclusive investment world


February 02, 2022

New global research reveals women could add more than US$3 trillion to global investments and want to invest where their money has a positive impact.

NEW YORK, Feb. 2, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- BNY Mellon Investment Management, a leading global asset manager with US$2.4 trillion1 in assets under management, commissioned one of the largest independent2 global studies examining investment attitudes and behaviors, and today releases its findings.


As the first in a new series addressing diversity, Pathway to Inclusive Investment sets out to understand the barriers preventing higher levels of female investment participation and the potential impact if investing was more accessible to women. The research surveyed 8,000 respondents across 16 markets, as well as 100 asset managers, with combined assets under management of nearly $60 trillion3.


Pathway to Inclusive Investment reveals that women are less likely to invest than men, compounding any existing financial disadvantages and limiting women's collective influence as investors. It also shows that women want to invest in a way that has a positive social and environmental impact, and that if women invested4 at the same rate as men there could be more than $3.22 trillioni of additional capital to invest globally, with over $1.87 trillionii flowing to more responsible investments.




The research identified three key barriers to women investing:

  • The income hurdle: On average, globally women believe they need $4,092 of disposable income each month – or $50,000 per year – before investing some of their money.
  • The perception that investing is inherently high-risk: Only 9% of women report they have a 'high' or 'very high' level of risk tolerance when it comes to investing, while 49% have a 'moderate' level and 42% have 'low' tolerance for risk.
  • The engagement crisis: Globally, just 28% of women feel confident about investing some of their money. The industry needs to look at how to better engage and inspire more women to invest, which in turn could increase investment confidence and participation.


Hanneke Smits, Chief Executive Officer of BNY Mellon Investment Management, said: "Looking at the research, it's clear that increasing women's participation in investment is critical for their personal prosperity and to help shape a more equitable future for all. Doing so will also potentially help increase the allocation of capital for the benefit of society and the environment.


"Inclusive investment means ensuring the investment industry is accessible to all. BNY Mellon Investment Management is committed to doing our part to engage women more effectively. We will be using the insights from this research to ensure meaningful change takes place. By doing this, we also hope to promote the investment management industry as an attractive career option for women."




The research found that women are looking for more than just a financial return on their investments – they also want to see a positive impact on society and the environment.


Encouraging greater levels of female investment could see even more capital flowing to funds with social and environmental goals. Over half of women (55%) would invest – or invest more – if the impact of their investment aligned with their personal values, and 53% would invest – or invest more – if the fund they invested in had a clear purpose for good.  


This is even more pronounced among younger women. According to the research, seven in 10 women under 30 (71%) who already invest prefer to invest in companies that support their personal values, compared with 53% of women over 50 who invest.




The asset manager research highlights the extent to which the investment industry is still oriented towards men. Almost nine in 10 asset managers (86%) admit that their default investment customer – the person they automatically target with their products – is a man. 


Nearly three quarters of asset managers (73%) believe the investment industry would be able to engage more women to invest if the industry itself had more female fund managers, who could also be important role models. However, half of the asset managers in the survey revealed that just 10% or less of their fund managers or investment analysts are women.           


Anne-Marie McConnon, Global Chief Client Experience Officer at BNY Mellon Investment Management, said: "As women, we all have different hurdles to overcome to meet our individual financial goals. Some of these are influenced by demographics and personal circumstances but some is a result of how the investment industry has traditionally engaged with women.


"We believe it is in everyone's interest for more women to invest. Not only will it be good for the future, but also wider society. Pathway to Inclusive Investment emphasizes the traditional stereotype of the person who is interested in investing is outdated. Young women are interested in investing too, but they need to be inspired to do so."


As part of a company that touches every part of the investment cycle – we believe BNY Mellon Investment Management is in a strong position to make a difference. We aim to effect change at the grassroots through early engagement about money via our partnership with Inspiring Girls International, a global charity dedicated to raising the aspirations of young girls around the world. We can examine how to inspire the circa 20,000 women in our own organization to participate and invest more. We will review our approach and assess how we can improve engagement with women and work with intermediaries and the wider industry to make a difference.

  • To download the report in PDF, please click here
  • To view the interactive overview of the report, please click here


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About the study           

Throughout 2021, BNY Mellon Investment Management commissioned one of the largest ever global independent consumer studies examining investment attitudes and behaviors. The research was conducted by Coleman Parkes Research and included 8,000 respondents across 16 markets* – comprising consumers who already invest as part of their future financial planning, and those who currently do not invest. To provide an industry perspective, 100 global asset managers representing asset management firms with nearly $60 trillion (as at Q2 2021) of combined assets under management were also interviewed. To complement the global opinion research, the research included a series of in-depth discussions with an international advisory panel who provided their perspectives on the research and their ideas on making investment more gender inclusive.

*The 16 markets included in the study were: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Nordics (Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden), Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, the UK and the USA.


About BNY Mellon Investment Management

BNY Mellon Investment Management is one of the world's largest asset managers, with $2.4 trillion in assets under management as December 31, 2021. Through an investor-first approach, BNY Mellon Investment Management brings to clients the best of both worlds: specialist expertise from eight investment firms offering solutions across every major asset class, backed by the strength, stability, and global presence of BNY Mellon. Additional information on BNY Mellon Investment Management is available on


BNY Mellon Investment Management is a division of BNY Mellon, which has $46.7 trillion in assets under custody and/or administration as December 31, 2021. BNY Mellon can act as a single point of contact for clients looking to create, trade, hold, manage, service, distribute or restructure investments. BNY Mellon is the corporate brand of The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation (NYSE: BK). Additional information is available on Follow us on Twitter @BNYMellon or visit our newsroom at for the latest company news.



As part of the move to address barriers to more inclusive investing, BNY Mellon Investment Management and partner AllBright are hosting a two-day virtual summit on 29th – 30th March 2022. Open to everyone globally, the summit will feature workshops and panel discussions with leading founders and investors. To find out more about the sessions, speakers and to sign-up, visit:


AllBright is the leading global careers network for women, founded by Debbie Wosskow OBE and Anna Jones. Combining digital-first resources, with a physical club in London, AllBright offers working women an inspiring space to connect, develop, and supercharge their careers – all while building their confidence along the way. Driven by a mission to empower a thriving global sisterhood, AllBright is uniquely positioned to support women at all ages and stages of their careers with a toolkit that includes online training, events, exclusive content and unrivalled networking opportunities.


Inspiring Girls International

Inspiring Girls International is a charity, founded by Miriam González Durántez, dedicated to raising the aspirations of young girls around the world by connecting them with amazing female role models. We introduce young women to the full variety of careers and options in life and inspire them to aim high! For more information visit  


This material is issued by BNY Mellon Investment Management to members of the press and media and the information contained herein should not be construed as investment advice or a recommendation of any investment strategy. It does not constitute an offer or solicitation of securities or investment services or an endorsement thereof in any jurisdiction or in any circumstance in which such offer or solicitation is unlawful or not authorized. 


The survey results from the study contain the opinions of the respondents and not those of BNY Mellon. They are for illustrative purposes only. The information has been provided without taking into account the investment objective, financial situation or needs of any particular person. BNY Mellon and its affiliates are not responsible for any subsequent investment advice given based on the information supplied. This is not investment research or a research recommendation for regulatory purposes. Information and opinions presented have been obtained or derived from sources which BNY Mellon believed to be reliable, but not guaranteed to its accuracy. BNY Mellon accepts no liability for loss arising from use of this material.


BNY Mellon has no affiliation with Coleman Parkes Research.


Investing involves risk including possible loss of principal.

1 As at December 31, 2021
2 Research conducted by Coleman Parkes Research
As at Q2 2021.
4 Investment in stocks, bonds and other financial products that are not savings accounts.


i This calculation was made using the data from the research on the average volumes of investments held by men and women to find the difference. Data from Cerulli was the used to calculate the size of the retail investment market in each of the geographies within the study and applied the difference between male and female investment volumes to that number to show how much more investment would be available if female investment volumes matched male. It is impossible to know exactly what percentage of the individual retail investors in each market are male and female, so the calculation assumes that there are equal numbers of each, in line with population averages. Because typically more men invest than women this number can therefore be viewed as a conservative estimate of the total investment uptick that would be seen if the gender investment gap were closed (which is why the report references this number as "at least" $3.22 trillion).


ii The research also provided data on the share of investments made by men and women that are responsible – i.e. investments that are qualified according to either their positive impact on society and the planet or at least their absence of a negative impact. The average share of female investments that are responsible was then applied to the overall uptick in investment volumes to reveal the percentage of those investments that can be expected to be responsible. 

SOURCE BNY Mellon Investment Management

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