Family, Values, and Women in Finance

33 Pages Posted: 23 Aug 2016 Last revised: 8 Mar 2017

See all articles by Renee B. Adams

Renee B. Adams

University of Oxford

Brad M. Barber

University of California, Davis

Terrance Odean

University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business

Date Written: September 1, 2016


About 18% of Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) members are women, which is well below the percentage of workers who are women around the world. To gain insights into why women represent a relatively low percentage of investment professionals, we survey the 2016 CFA membership, which consists of about 135,000 members in 151 countries. We document that female CFA members are less tradition and conformity-oriented and more achievement-oriented than both male CFA members and women in the general population. This suggests that gender-specific barriers discourage women from entering the CFA professions. One possible barrier is that finance is a profession that disproportionately rewards those who work long and inflexible hours. Women face greater time obligations outside of work. Thus female CFA members express a stronger desire to recapture time from work than male CFA members. Woman CFA members desire more time outside of work when they are married, have children, or are older and value tradition. In sharp contrast to these results, family circumstances and valuing tradition do not affect male CFA members’ desire for more time.

Keywords: Finance; Women; CFA; Investment Industry; Values; Tradition; Selection

JEL Classification: J16; J22; G00; G20

Suggested Citation

Adams, Renée B. and Barber, Brad M. and Odean, Terrance, Family, Values, and Women in Finance (September 1, 2016). Available at SSRN: or

Renée B. Adams

University of Oxford ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
Great Britain

Brad M. Barber (Contact Author)

University of California, Davis ( email )

Graduate School of Management
One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616
United States
530-752-0512 (Phone)
530-752-2924 (Fax)

Terrance Odean

University of California, Berkeley - Haas School of Business ( email )

545 Student Services Building, #1900
2220 Piedmont Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States
510-642-6767 (Phone)
510-666-2561 (Fax)


Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics