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Women & Personal Financing

The importance of establishing yearly goals for personal & family savings


Despite being the primary financial decision makers in the family, only two out of five women (41 percent) establish annual savings goals for themselves or their families, according to a new regional study conducted by The Provident Bank. Of those who do establish savings goals, a vast majority (80 percent) feel they are successfully meeting them.

“We were surprised to learn that setting goals for savings is not a top priority for women, who as a group have statistically shown they are the primary decision-makers in the home,” said Diana Braga, Public Relations & Corporate Donations Manager, The Provident Bank. “A lesson can be learned from those who do establish goals, since most of them feel they are on track for their future spending needs.”

The “Provident Bank Women & Banking Study,” conducted in the spring, surveyed more than 500 women within the bank’s 16-county service area of central and northern New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania.

The study also revealed the following data:

  • 82 percent of women polled said that they are the primary decision-makers regarding which bank to use for personal/family banking.
  • 52 percent of respondents said they most often use online banking as compared to at a branch (27 percent), at an ATM (14 percent) or via mobile device (8 percent).
  • 47% of women surveyed who are business owners (representing 14 percent of panel respondents) said for their business, they most often use online banking as compared to at a branch (45 percent), via a mobile device (5 percent) or at an ATM (3 percent).
  • When asked what was their idea of a “great banking experience,” among the top responses were: “Options for the way I want to bank” (23 percent) and “Care about me – don’t just say it, show it” (16 percent).
  • When asked what upset them the most about the banking experience, the top two responses were: “Worrying about overdraft fees” (12 percent) and “The bank doesn’t care about me” (11 perecent).
  • When asked what banks should say to women to make them want to bank there, among the top two responses were: “We understand your financial needs” (15 percent) and “treat me like an individual” (9 percent).
  • Respondents listed “family” (16 percent), “health” (14 percent) and “having enough money to live on in retirement” (8 percent) among the most important things in their life.

The survey, which found that women generally want to be financially educated while being emotionally engaged, was part of a Provident initiative that culminated with the launch of a new online community for women, www.Provident4Women.com, designed to address those needs.

The community, facilitated by a team of 20 Provident women with diverse perspectives and expertise who will post new videos and original and curated content each month, is also connected on Facebook and LinkedIn.

“The goal of Provident4Women is to connect with and engage women by starting conversations that are relevant to their lives and meet the needs they identified in the survey,” said Braga, the Provident4Women Team Leader. “We’ve had a very positive reaction so far and the community continues to grow.”

More information about The Provident Bank and Provident4Women is available at www.ProvidentNJ.com. Visit www.Facebook.com/ProvidentNJ and www.Twitter.com/ProvidentNJ to join the conversations.

About the Study

Provident Bank’s “Woman & Banking” Study was an Internet Panel Study conducted by Brand Champs between April 10 and 23, 2014. The study surveyed 501 women over the age of 18 residing in Provident’s 16-county service area, including Morris, Essex, Bergen, Hudson, Union, Somerset, Middlesex, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean, Passaic, Warren and Hunterdon Counties in New Jersey and Bucks, Lehigh and Northampton Counties in Pennsylvania. Of respondents, 52 percent were married, 29 percent were single, 10 percent were divorced and 8 percent were living with a partner.

The Provident Bank, (www.providentnj.com) a community-oriented bank offering “commitment you can count on” since 1839, is the wholly owned subsidiary of Provident Financial Services, Inc. (NYSE:PFS), which reported assets of $8.4 billion as of June 30, 2014. With over $5.8 billion in deposits, The Provident Bank provides a comprehensive suite of financial products and services through its network of  branches throughout northern and central New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania. The Bank also provides fiduciary and wealth management services through its wholly owned subsidiary, Beacon Trust Company.

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