Planning for retirement is a daunting task but it’s too important not to think about – especially for women. Fortunately, there are some small steps women can take today to protect and grow their finances for the future.

It’s probably no surprise to hear that Australian women often retire with less money saved up than their male peers. New research* confirms that even in 2024, this is still the case.  


There are several reasons for this, including well-documented wage gaps and taking time out of the workforce for caring responsibilities.


Not only do women end up investing less money through super over the course of their careers, but they’re also missing out on the compounding effects of super which grow balances over time.


Women are also less likely to invest their money outside super than men. Data shows that while 38% of men have invested their money, only 26% of women have done the same. 


Similarly, CFS found that while 78% of men have made plans for their financial future, only 67% of women had done similar. Women were also less likely to set financial goals or create and stick to a budget.  

Knowledge is power

It’s important to note that women care about their finances just as much as men. In fact, women are more likely to feel worried  about their finances or guilty that they’re not doing enough to manage finances compared to their male peers.   


So what’s holding them back? One major hurdle is confidence – or more specifically, that women aren’t as confident with money and investing as men. It’s hard to make good financial decisions when you don’t trust you know what a ‘good’ decision looks like. 


Luckily, financial ‘confidence’ is strongly linked to education. The more we know about super and investing, the more confident we can be in our decisions.


What’s more, there are several easy ways for women to brush up on their financial knowledge and back themselves.

  • Read correspondence from your super fund

Super is the largest financial asset most Australians will own outside of a family home, but women are far less likely than men to closely read letters or emails from their fund. These messages include important information about your account and can help demystify the super system so you have a better grasp on the returns you receive and what’s influencing them.

  • Check out online education hubs

There’s plenty of useful information available online to help you navigate investment markets, super, insurance and more – just be sure to check you’re dealing with a reputable source. CFS has a range of resources, including a jargon buster and helpful webinars, available for free on our website. You can also check out our beginner’s guide to investing, called Investing made simple.

  • Get help from a professional

A core part of a financial adviser’s job is to help educate clients about their finances so they can make informed decisions about their money. Working with a financial adviser can help you map out a plan for your future so you’re more likely to reach your goals.


CFS also has several tools and calculators that can help you better understand how your decisions today might affect your future. Our retirement calculator even allows women to see how career breaks might affect their super balance at retirement so they can make more concrete plans.


Try our Retirement Calculator  or arrange a meeting with a financial planner.

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* Source: CFS commissioned survey of 2,966 Australians and research was completed in March 2023. Findings and statistics in this article are based on this research.   


Avanteos Investments Limited ABN 20 096 259 979, AFSL 245531 (AIL) is the trustee of the Colonial First State FirstChoice Superannuation Trust ABN 26 458 298 557 and issuer of FirstChoice range of super and pension products. Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFSIL) is the responsible entity and issuer of products made available under FirstChoice Investments and FirstChoice Wholesale Investments.


Information on this webpage is provided by AIL and CFSIL. It may include general advice but does not consider your individual objectives, financial situation, needs or tax circumstances. You can find the target market determinations (TMD) for our financial products at which include a description of who a financial product might suit. You should read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Financial Services Guide (FSG) carefully, assess whether the information is appropriate for you, and consider talking to a financial adviser before making an investment decision. You can get the PDS and FSG at or by calling us on 13 13 36.