A Woman’s Wealth

When Black Enterprise last featured the topic of women and money management in 2003, we boldly declared “A Man Is Not a Plan.” This year, we’re reinforcing that message by showing women how to take control of their financial future in a special three-part series, Women & Money.

Less than a quarter of women feel “very confident” about achieving their financial goals, according to a recent study by Prudential Financial. That’s why we knew it was imperative to create a package that would guide women through the process of wealth creation and preservation. In part I, we discussed the basics of money management, such as creating a budget and building a savings account. In part II, we shared information about investing, such as how to get started and how much risk one should take. This month we conclude the package by focusing on wealth preservation—how to protect one’s hard-earned nest egg through estate planning and obtaining the right insurance. The package provides a financial blueprint for women according to life stage—single (with and without children), married, divorced, and widowed—to help them make sound decisions with their money.

We’re not bringing our message home just in the magazine. Our TV show Black Enterprise Business Report developed a companion series, which originally aired in February (if you missed it, you can watch full episodes online at blackenterprise.com/television). The shows feature financial advice from Consumer Affairs Editor Sheiresa McRae, estate planning attorney Lori Anne Douglass, and investment adviser Dail St. Claire. And at our annual Women of Power Summit in February, we held a Women & Money workshop dedicated to helping professional women improve their personal relationship with money. Moderated by Valerie Coleman Morris, the panel included financial journalist Stacey Tisdale, self-made millionaire Elon Bomani, and portfolio manager Valerie Mosley.

Having a sound financial plan is more important than ever, considering the turbulent economy. It’s even more critical for a woman because the chances are high that even if she starts out as half of a couple, she will eventually become the head of household due to divorce or widowhood. “It’s vital for women to take responsibility for their financial future instead of blindly handing the reins to their spouses or significant others,” says McRae, who oversaw the editorial package.

Although this issue marks the last installment in our series on women and money, your journey toward financial security shouldn’t stop here. With a solid wealth building plan in hand and a commitment to stay the course, women can ensure a bright financial future for themselves as well as their families in the years ahead.

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