Thought Leadership

The Year of the Woman

2023 was dubbed the “Year of the Woman” due to series of significant economic, cultural, and social achievements by women that demonstrated their profound influence and leadership across various fields.

Female entertainers like Beyonce, Taylor Swift, and Pink sparkled on stage as solo acts. Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour contributed nearly $6 billion to the U.S. economy. She was named TIME magazine’s Person of the Year for her highest grossing tour of all time. Similarly, Beyoncé’s Renaissance World Tour spurred local economic growth in hosting cities, a phenomenon now referred to as the “Beyoncé Bump.” The film “Barbie,” starring and directed by women, became the highest grossing movie of the year.

Sports provided another arena for women to shine. The U.S. Open Women’s Championship match between Coco Gauff and Arnya Sabalenka was the most viewed women’s final of any tennis major ever on ESPN, up 92% from the year prior. Taylor Swift and Simone Biles increased the NFL’s viewership and fanbase, and the NFL leadership welcomed them with open arms.

We also saw a record number of women in the U.S. Congress—one in four members—and more females CEOs than any other time in history, at 10%.

At the same time, a significant economic shift is underway that will put more money in the hands of a greater number of women than ever before.Research produced by Relevance, a digital marketing agency specializing in businesses that target ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs) estimates that there are now 29,300 UHNW women in the world, an increase of more than 50% since 2016.

Women today represent more than 40% of high-net-worth individuals globally, and the share is expected to grow strongly over the next decade. A recent Washington Post article reports that $30 trillion in Baby Boomer wealth will largely be controlled by women, which is close to the equivalent of U.S. GDP. This phenomenon is being called “The Great Wealth Transfer,” and it will not just impact women’s lives but also society at large.

Changing demographics will be the largest driver as Baby Boomer men pass away, and in turn, pass on control of their household wealth to their spouses and daughters. This will be one of the biggest growth opportunities for the economy and the financial services industry, in the next decade.

Research from OliverWyman suggests that women are more risk-averse and focused on their life goals with regard to investments, as they are expected to live longer, usually outliving their partners. They also consider themselves less confident about their investment skills and demand more involvement and advice from their wealth managers. The wealth managers who win the day will be those who fundamentally review their strategy to best serve women and embark on a broader transformation of their value proposition.

Over the next 20 years, women will control more money than they ever have. We at TwinFocus want to support these women through their journey and also celebrate this history-making opportunity for women and girls. We recently purchased a piece of art to add to our office art collection, titled “Wall Street Fearless Girl.” As we walk by this young girl standing in front of the massive, opposing bull, we are reminded how strong women have been throughout history to now get to a point where they are taking the lead in wealth accumulation. The world will be a very different place as a result.

As a way of celebrating and supporting these achievements, we have decided to partner with the Women’s Foundation of Boston and sponsor their Make Her Mark event in September 2024 to celebrate female economic empowerment. Please join us there! Details can be found here.