Making a Business Case for Supporting Latinas in the Workforce
By Karen Vergara, CPA, Allgen Financial Advisors, Inc.
As a Latina professional, having worked in Corporate America, I understand the challenges that we face while climbing the corporate ladder. Not only do we embody the historical and still present gender-bias in the workforce but add to that the cultural dissonance evident in corporate human interactions. For years, both women and Latinos have lobbied and continue to do so in efforts to be recognized as viable contributors to society, specifically to a company’s bottom line.
I can understand the potential bias I may have in stating my value to Corporate America as a Latina. Why would I argue in opposition to the essence of who I am? Therefore, I am elated to be part of an exercise that introduces the objective reality of numbers/data into the conversation. As a Latina Financial Advisor, we promote ROI to our clients in their investments and businesses. So, the question is, does supporting and promoting Latinas in a company’s workforce provide a positive ROI?
Since 2001, Allgen Financial Advisors (www.allgenfinancial.com), a Registered Investment Advisory Firm, has been comparing the returns of companies in the LS50 to the stock market by using the S&P 500 index and the results for this year are in.
In 2017, the S&P 500 gained an average annual return of 21.83 percent, while the companies in the LS50 gained an average 32.25 percent, a positive difference of 10.42 percent.
Since this report has been commissioned, the LS50 has outperformed by offering a total average annual return of 12.15 percent, while the S&P 500 has returned 7.98 percent, a positive difference of 4.17 percent during the period.
To put these numbers into context, a hypothetical investment of $100,000 in the LS50 in the beginning of 2001 would have resulted in a final account balance of $532,905 while an equivalent investment in the S&P500 would have resulted in a final account balance of $283,610 at the end of 2017. That represents approximately an additional $250,000 for an investor choosing to invest in the LS50 index versus the S&P500.
While this analysis is by no means comprehensive, as there are additional variables that must be considered when making investment decisions, it is difficult to argue against the power of diversity and inclusion, especially when data proves its positive results. We must applaud and continue to support the efforts of companies that recognize our value and are committed to offering us Latinas opportunities for career advancement and growth.
*This analysis is based on available data at the time of analysis. Some company performances have been omitted as they no longer exist or were not publicly traded. This analysis and returns are also based on a yearly rebalancing of the portfolio to take into account the different companies that are chosen as part of the index each year and an equal weighting of each company. In addition, the measured performance and conclusions derived therein reflect a retrospective look at market performance as the study is conducted after the companies have been selected. It is never prudent to invest based on historical stock performance alone. In addition, the LS50 index is not a real market index but rather a dynamic collection of companies as chosen yearly by LATINA Style, Inc. The rates of return and performance illustrated do not reflect any costs associated with investing in either index.
As such, the above article should not be construed, nor is it written to provide financial advice as individual situations may vary and past performance is not indicative of future results. Any decision to invest in equity markets should be consulted with a financial professional.