Life insurance is the most popular choice of women covered in a recent survey, with at least 72% wanting to invest in it followed by 69% for deposits and 61% for mutual funds, according to a survey released on International Women's Day yesterday by ASSOCHAM and IndiaFirst Life Insurance.
About 47% of the respondents show a preference for Money Back Plans in life insurance, expressing the need for financial liquidity to maintain expenses in the short term. The next most sought after life insurance product is the Wholelife policy with 35% of the respondents preferring it.
Fewer respondents show interest in Endowment Plans and Unit Linked Insurance Plans with 25% and 20% responses respectively. 48% of the respondents convey their interest in a dual benefit of Lump Sum and Monthly Income demonstrating the need for financial liquidity. 46% of respondents exhibit interest in limited and regular premium payment, indicating the respondents' mind set to save regularly but for a short duration of time.
The survey results show too that women are keen on insurance policies which cover critical life threatening diseases, grow assets, enhance financial liquidity to meet lifestyle needs, build a retirement fund and shield policyholders from rising medical costs in the golden years.
The financial choices that are least preferred by respondents are bonds (19%), stocks and equities (21%) and pension funds (36%) in that order, reports Business Standard citing the survey report.
The key finding of the IndiaFirst Life-ASSOCHAM 'Women Oriented Survey' reveals that women start saving young and have a clear understanding of their needs. The survey also indicates while there is a change in their monetary requirement with changing roles, women seek financial security for themselves as well as for their family.
The survey shows that the majority of women in each age bracket inculcate a habit of saving their money on a monthly basis for a wide spectrum of financial needs.
While the highest percentage of 42% of respondents opt for monthly investment, nearly 13% respondents invest quarterly, 9% half yearly and 17% are for yearly investments. The pattern which has emerged is that 39% of single women, 40% of married women with no children, 48% of married women with young children and 53% of married women with one or more adult children, invest monthly.
The survey results also show that more than 69% women said that they relied on their families while making any investment decisions, followed by self-reliant gen-next women at 28% who are starting to take these financial decisions on their own. 23% of respondents said that they depended on subject matter experts or financial advisors, whereas around 14% stated that they consulted their friends or relatives.
Mr G Srinivasan, Chairman of ASSOCHAM, said that more women-centric products are required, to attract women to take up life insurance.
Ms R M Vishakha, Managing Director & CEO of IndiaFirst Life Insurance, said: “It is important to educate female customers about insurance as a risk management tool and ensure familiarity for long term sustainability.”
The quantitative structured survey was conducted with a sample size of 1,500 Indian women across India. The survey focused on buying behaviour and investment habits across various demographics with more detailed insight into women's insurance preferences, if any. The age distribution of respondents shows that 44% of them belong to the age band of 31-45 years while 36% are aged below 30.
Homemakers form 39% of the respondents covered in the survey while 52% have a job or are self-employed. Only 2% of the respondents are retired.