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Do women show more financial literacy after a divorce than men?

Divorces, whether they involve high-asset couples or not, tend to have serious financial repercussions for the parties involved. But now, a new survey of CPA financial planners suggests that women are doing a much better job than men in becoming financially educated following a divorce.

Not only that, but women also exhibit better financial habits, are twice as likely to seek employment and do a much better job of increasing their savings towards retirement.

By the numbers

The survey, released by the American Institute of CPAs and based on client traits noticed by financial planners, shows that women are generally better prepared financially and quicker to act than men after a divorce.

The biggest discrepancies were the following:

  • 40.2% of women are likely to seek out a job, compared to 20.6% of men
  • 41.3% of women increase their savings towards retirement, compared to 16.4% of men
  • 42.3% of women are likely to improve their spending habits compared to 11.7% of men
  • 60.4% of women are likely to seek out financial advice compared to 4.4% of men

While these numbers disproportionately favor women's financial moves following a divorce, there were some similarities between the sexes. Women, for example, are equally as likely as men to exhibit a deterioration of their spending habits following the end of a marriage (25.7% of women, 24.9% of men).

The survey, discussed in Accounting Today, does come with a general caveat, however: nearly three quarters of retirement age divorced individuals need to have a stronger understanding of their financial situation.

How to better prepare yourself financially for a divorce

When asked to give advice to retirement aged individuals who are divorcing or considering divorce, the CPAs in the survey all responded fairly similarly: develop a better understanding of how to manage your finances, understand the long-term financial consequences of a divorce, and finally, understand the tax implications of a divorce settlement.

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