Gender gap in financial literacy: a lack of knowledge or confidence?

“If women and girls are fearless, they will benefit by becoming more financially independent, more financially secure, more in control of their future and society will benefit.”

Women are less financially literate than men. But does this gap reflect a lack of knowledge or a lack of confidence? To find out Maria Demertzis, deputy director of Bruegel is joined by Annamaria Lusardi, Professor of Economics and Accountancy at the George Washington University and non-resident fellow at Bruegel and Maarten van Rooij, senior economist at the Dutch Central Bank in The Sound of Economics.

Annamaria and Maarten explain their findings in a recently published paper that about one-third of the financial literacy gender gap can be explained by women’s lower confidence levels.

Relevant publication:

Bucher-Koenen F., R. Alessie, A. Lusardi and M. Rooij (2021) ‘Fearless woman: financial literacy and stock market participation’.



The Sound of Economics

Insights, debates, and research-based discussions on economic policy in Europe and beyond. The podcast is produced by Bruegel (, an independent and non-doctrinal think tank based in Brussels. It seeks to contribute to European and global economic policy-making through open, fact-based, and policy-relevant research, analysis, and debate. A podcast member of EuroPod.