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Invest in Gender Equality

Invest in a portfolio to promote gender equality by increasing representation and equal treatment of women.

“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.”

- Ruth Bader Ginsburg


Equality is premised on equal treatment, opportunities, rights, and access. Women have long been marginalized across the globe, and while some progress has been made like legal rights and anti-discrimination policies, there is still a long way to go.

Gender inequality is direct and indirect, but it is everywhere. This integrated and systemic injustice affects women across a wide range of social issues such as healthcare, finance, and education. The investment theme Gender Equality looks beyond the bare minimum of equality in the form of security and seeks to combat gender discrimination in the workplace.

Gender Representation in Leadership

An infographic with two sections of 10 pictograms of women. In the first section, the first pictogram is filled in with a caption stating that less than 10% of the CEOs in the Fortune 500 companies were women in 2020. In the second section, the first pictogram is minimally filled with a caption stating that less than 1% of the CEOs in Fortune 500 companies were women of color in 2020.

Gender Disparity in Promotion

Infographic states that for every 100 men who get promoted, 72 women get promoted. For Black women, this drops to 58 women promoted to every 100 men.

Gender Pay Gap

Infographic with a dollar sign filled in a little over half with a caption that states women of color earn less than 66% of the wages earned by men doing the same job in the financial services industry. This is the widest pay gap of any industry.

The Motherhood Penalty

Infographic with a dollar bill filled in a little over half. The caption states that women who take a year off from work earn 39% less than women who don't.

Investing in Gender Equality with FLIT

Why Invest in Gender Equality?

The main disadvantage of discrimination from a business perspective is missing out on key talents. There is plenty of evidence that talent is not differentially distributed by gender, age, or geography. Diversity brings value also by bringing different experiences and perspectives together, leading to better decision-making. We firmly believe companies with equal representation at the board and management level, gender pay equity, transparency on gender diversity, and proactive gender goals and targets will overperform their peers. There is already strong evidence that diverse companies perform financially better, and we believe institutional investors will also increasingly favor companies who score better on gender equality targets.

Impact Metrics

There are many standards for achieving gender equality such as the Women Empowerment Principles, Sustainable Development Goals 5, Gender Equality, and 10, Reducing Inequalities, and other gender assessment indices. FLIT is here to help you invest your resources into companies pushing for Gender Equality and actually doing it.

Portfolio Spotlight

Etsy, Inc. (ETSY). Etsy hosts one of the largest platforms for e-commerce, offering handmade and vintage items, art, clothing and more. Etsy performed well on gender equality in fact, women make up 44% of the board of directors and more than 50% of the executive management team. The company also holds a Mentorship Circle Program, an engineering sponsorship program for women and minorities. They go beyond just setting diversity targets, they integrate diversity, equity, and inclusion achievements into executive compensation. They also conduct regular pay-gap assessments and in 2020, analysis found no unexplained pay gaps adverse to women or non-white employees. Etsy is a shining star in our portfolio.

Benefits of Expert Curation

Our team at FLIT has researched hundreds of investment funds and companies to curate a portfolio that we believe embodies gender equality in multiple sectors. Each company is screened for multiple metrics, and we provide this data to users to ensure you can invest in line with your values. Unfortunately, many funds are promoted as gender-equality-focused but only in their name. For example, the largest “Gender equality fund” only supported women 20% of the time they faced a vote. Using our selected metrics, we are confident that we have chosen the best-performing funds and companies whose intentions and actions are in line with our values and yours.

Gender Equity Solutions Beyond Investing

What can you do to promote gender equality?

  • Challenge your gender bias – take the Harvard Gender-Career IAT to discover your implicit biases
  • Vote whenever you can and vote female wherever you can. If female candidates are not an option, opt for the best feminist male candidate
  • Donate, support or volunteer for a nonprofit organization advocating for change. Check out for example: Girls who Code, The Malala Fund and She should Run
  • Champion for-profit companies that are empowering women and contributing to achieve Gender Equality. Buy their products or use their services, work for them, and invest in them

How can we drive systemic change?

  • Reform policy, infrastructure, and social mechanisms that create and maintain inequality. E.g., abolish the motherhood penalty.
  • Adopt gender quotas, enforcing female representation.
  • Commit to gender policies, participation monitoring, and pay gap reports
  • This looks different at the local, national and global levels. Read our white paper to learn more.

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