In the past, finance had been an exclusively male field. Today, men dominate investing. However, many women have made great strides in finance, often going through a long and tedious journey to become investment gurus. Thanks to them, the path to leadership roles in finance is now open to other female traders.
Nelisiwe Masango is an award-winning South African trader. In recent years, she has been focused on teaching others from the South African community, especially women, about finance and trading specifically, trying to help more people achieve financial freedom.
After graduating from Boksburg High, a high school in Boksburg, one of the eastern suburbs of Johannesburg, Masango decided to study commerce and entrepreneurial management. However, a year later, she decided to drop out and started her journey in the foreign exchange market.
In 2013 Masango founded Bear Run Investment, a trading company focused on providing individuals with economic finance programs that give opportunities for financial growth. Its subsidiary firm, FeFine, is a company that empowers young women trader with financial plans and gives them a platform to nurture themselves in finance.
For her efforts in improving the economic stability of the South African women’s community, Masango won the Frost & Sullivan African Growth, Innovation, and Leadership Award. In one of her interviews, she mentioned that she finds confidence, motivation, passion, belief, and economic literacy the most important traits of a pro trader.
Lauren Simmons — Youngest Female Trader on Wall Street
Lauren Simmons is a former stock market trader at Rosenblatt Securities. When she started trading full-time at the New York Stock Exchange in 2017, Simmons set the record by becoming the youngest female broker at the NYSE and being the only current full-time female trader. In addition, it is worth noting that she was only the second-ever African American woman to hold this position at the New York Stock Exchange.
Simmons was born and brought up in the city of Marietta in Georgia. When she entered Kennesaw State in 2012, Simmons decided to major in genetics. After receiving her bachelor’s, however, she decided to go to NYC and become a trader to make money on the stock market. She got acquainted with entrepreneur Richard Rosenblatt who offered her a position at his trading company in 2017.
In 2018, almost two years after starting her work at Rosenblatt Securities, Simmons decided to leave the company and resign from her position as a trader, naming exclusion by coworkers at the stock exchange as one of the reasons that made her sign her resignation. Currently, Simmons is focused on educating the public about finance, hosting a producing web series about IPOs, and writing a book on personal finance.
Mandi Pour Rafsendjani
Mandi Pour Rafsendjani is a German-Australian trader and trading mindset coach. She was born and raised in Germany, but later in life decided to emigrate, first ending up in Hong Kong, but then moving to the city of Melbourne in Australia.
Visa conditions set by the Australian government didn’t allow Rafsendjani to work a full-time job during her first year in-country. So instead, she decided to keep herself busy by attending seminars about markets trading. Rafsanjani has been an active trader ever since that. She’s most famous, however, for her innovative trading psychology seminars, which help people make financial decisions when trading on the stock market.
Geraldine Weiss is truly a living legend in women’s finance. Born in 1926, she majored in Business and Finance and graduated from UC Berkeley in 1945. As Weiss stated herself, her earliest interest in finance had been sparked by Benjamin Graham, famous for being the teacher of such well-known artists as Warren Buffet and John Templeton.
Geraldine Weiss began her investing career in 1962. First, she tried to find work as a broker, having been rejected by multiple companies who believed that finance is no place for a woman. Weiss then decided to start Investment Quality Trends, with Fred Whitmore being her primary collaborator. As a result, she has been the first woman to founder an investment advisory service.
Weiss later decided against working together with Whitmore and bought out his company’s share. She decided to play safe and signed the newsletter she created, “G. Weiss,” to hide her gender. Only 11 years later did Weiss reveal that she was, in fact, a woman. Weiss’ investment strategy mainly focused on choosing companies based on their dividend yield rather than their profit.
Born in 1922, Ingeborga Mootz got married at 17 years old. She had been just a homemaker for more than 30 years. Ingeborga’s husband didn’t allow her to work and didn’t give her an allowance. However, at the age of 48, she decided to become a financial consultant. Ingeborga’s education went successfully, and quite soon, she was working the job. Unfortunately, she got ill and had to stop working for more than 25 years.
After the death of her husband, Ingeborga started to trade on the stock market. She inherited a thousand VEBA stocks, which her husband bought shortly before his death. Quoting from Ingeborga herself, “it was a good omen. I wanted to become a trader, and here I suddenly got one thousand [VEBA] stocks”.