The funds management industry has made no progress on gender diversity in the eight years since the global financial crisis, according to a new study by Morningstar.
The Morningstar report, titled Fund Managers by Gender, considered 26,340 managers of funds across 56 countries and found that 20 per cent were women.
Morningstar found the rate of women fund managers is lower than the rate of women in other professions with similar education requirements, such as doctors and lawyers.
Countries with large financial centres tend to have lower proportions of women fund managers than smaller markets, found the report.
In addition, larger wealth management firms are more likely to name women as fund managers than smaller firms.
Women are more likely to run funds in areas of industry growth, found the research – such as passive, funds-of-funds and team-managed funds.
“Women have lower odds today of managing the types of funds that were once more likely to have women managers, including smaller funds and socially responsible funds,” said the report.
“Socially responsible investing, a market niche previously heavily associated with women, is now attracting men at a rapid pace,” it said.
The rate of women in the industry is decreasing in the US – a trend that is also playing out globally, said the report.
Opportunities for further research include why people enter and leave the funds management industry, said Morningstar – and whether there is a difference in performance along gender lines.