Payments – The Real Differences Between Women and Men

A Gender Gap?

Jean Marie Healy walked through Mastercard’s findings from 40,000 customers – half of whom were women – in 18 markets, including 10 developing markets, to understand if there are gender differences in financial behaviors. She busted myths about women’s relationship with money and explained how Mastercard plans to work with GBA to provide comprehensive payment solutions targeting women.

Key Points

  1. There are four myths the latest Mastercard research has uncovered about the female economy:
    1. Women are less confident when men when it comes to money: False. Of consumers with existing bank accounts, only 30 percent reported feeling “really confident” about money. There was no gender difference.
    2. Women choose to pay for purchases differently: Not really. Men over index slightly compared to women at 53 percent vs. 47 percent. The actual choice of how to pay tends to be driven more by the occasion than the person’s gender. For example, someone who wants to buy a coffee wants to purchase it quickly and in a frictionless manner.
    3. Men are more responsible for the financial well being of the household than women: False. There are nuances by country, but Mastercard found that women are responsible for household budgeting and virtually all of the day-to-day spending.
    4. Women are highly risk averse: Not exactly. Women are very cautious, and it is really important that we make a distinction between being cautious and being less confident. Women are better savers, with 16 percent of women more likely to save for the future and 48 percent more likely to pay back a loan. Seventy-five percent of women reported being worried about the future.
  2. It’s important to avoid “pink washing” or a “pink it and shrink it” mentality at all costs. That is not to say there is something wrong with the color pink, however. There are plenty of examples of pink cards that are highly successful – but that is because they bring real value.
  3. Other key takeaways:
    1. Building confidence is extremely important – for both women and men.
    2. Women feel under-appreciated, so celebrating their roles in advertising and communications is critical.
2018 GBA Summit


JEAN MARIE HEALY Vice President, Global Consumer Credit, Mastercard


It’s the occasion, not gender, that drives the way people choose to pay. — Jean Marie Healy

There is a distinction between cautious and confident. I am cautious when I cross the street, but this doesn’t mean I’m not confident – I’m good at it! — Jean Marie Healy