Although stock market trading is still male-dominated, a growing number of women are now entering the fray. Job uncertainty due to Covid-19 and the need for an alternate source of income have given a fillip to this trend.

But things were different fifteen years ago. When Asmita Patel first told her father of her decision to take up stock market trading as a full-time profession, his response was, “Even if you don’t do anything in your life it is okay. But don’t get into stock market trading.”

Now, Patel is a renowned stock market trainer and mentor who is financially empowering thousands of people, many of whom are women, through the Asmita Patel Global school of Trading.

“Today, we have women students in the age of 30-35 and even 45 years who are willing to learn stock market trading,” she said. The Covid-induced lockdown seems to have attracted many women to the world of stock trading as well.

Greater participation

Leading full-service brokers and new-age discount broking firms have all witnessed a significant jump in women participation in recent times.

“2020-21 has seen a significant growth in capital market participation, and this was true for women as well. The number of women, who opened an (Demat) account with us in January 2021 was 77 per cent more than the number of accounts opened in January 2020. This sort of growth was true across most of 2020-21 when compared to 2019 which implies that women were major contributors to the capital market participation growth we saw in 2020,” said leading retail broking firm Sharekhan.

Sharekhan, a full subsidiary of BNP Paribas, said 34 per cent of the female demat accounts opened with Sharekhan in 2020 were from women below the age of 30 while women in the range of 30-40 years accounted for 34 per cent of total female accounts.

Diversified financial services company Motilal Oswal Financial Services (MOFSL) also said that women investors on its platform have grown significantly as of January 2021 as compared to the same period in 2020. “We can see a good growth in the female client base, from 14.09 per cent in January 2020 to 35.69 per cent in January 21.”

“Similarly, we have seen growth in female traded clients as well, which increased to 35.68 per cent from 14.75 per cent. Thus, in recent times, we are witnessing an increased interest from our women traders,” it added.

“Over the years, women have been putting their savings in buying traditional assets like gold or keeping it in the form of cash, Bank FDs and, of late, diversifying into tax saving MFs. However, the lockdown and work-from-home scenario gave them the opportunity to start investing in the stock markets,” said Tejas Khoday, Co-founder & CEO of technology-focused stockbroking firm FYERS.

FYERS witnessed 40 per cent increase in women traders on its platform between January 2020 and 2021 with majority of female investors coming from Mumbai followed by Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Chennai.

“Women can be far better traders than men simply because stock trading is all about managing risks and women, on that count, always outperform the men out there,” Patel said.