Women and minorities are locked out of some of Wall Street’s most lucrative positions, managing just 1.1 percent of the $71.4 trillion of the industry’s assets, according to a report released Wednesday.
The difficulty in attracting investments comes as firms with diverse leadership teams match, and sometimes exceed, the profits of their competitors, found the study commissioned by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the Bella Research Group.
“This study, and our experience, confirm that there is no legitimate reason not to invest with diverse asset managers in the 21st century,” said Alberto Ibargüen, president of the Knight Foundation, which has an endowment of more than $2 billion.
Wall Street has long fought its reputation as a place where women and minorities struggle to succeed. In the complex world of asset management, where firms are given billions of dollars to invest by pensions, endowments and wealthy investors, the disparity is particularly stark. Only 5.2 percent and 3.8 percent of all mutual funds are owned by women and minorities, for example. The figures are similar in the hedge fund industry, where women and minorities manage less than 1 percent of the industry’s assets, the report found. (Washington Post)