A study by AXA Equitable indicates that 50 percent more women than men are worried about saving for retirement. The author of A Purse of Your Own says that's because they lack confidence in their abilities to invest. Deborah Owens says small steps can make a big difference in planning and saving for retirement.
"Typically, we spend about 11-and-a-half years out of the work force, and as a result of that, we're not putting anything into our purses. And so what I'm really imploring women to do is to start putting something away. It doesn't matter what amount, it just matters that they begin a consistent program of saving toward their financial future."
Owens says statistics show that women must eventually take charge of their retirement, even if they're happily married.
"The fact is that nine out of ten women are going to be solely responsible for their finances at some point. They will either never marry, they will either marry and then separate or divorce, or their husbands will pre-decease them, because women live an average of eight to ten years longer than men. And so with those type of odds, this message is specifically targeted to women, no matter where they are."
Owens says the basics apply to women and men: start by estimating the dollar amount you'll need to be financially independent in retirement. Set up an automatic savings plan with your bank. If your company offers a 401 (k) and you're not participating, sign up immediately.