CEO: 'Companies have a fiscal responsibility' to push for more women in leadership

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Companies with more women in leadership positions are likely to experience better financial performance, according to the CEO of non-profit organization Women Who Code.

Speaking to CNBC’s “Capital Connection” on Friday, International Women’s Day, Alaina Percival said companies have a “fiscal responsibility” to seek a gender balance in their top ranks.

“Companies experience a higher (return on investment) when they have women represented at the board, at the executive level, and on teams in general. So really, companies have a fiscal responsibility to have balance because it’s better,” Percival said.

Her sentiment is echoed by research from New York-based index company MSCI. According to a 2015 study from the firm, companies with “strong female leadership” generated a return on equity of 10.1 percent every year, compared to 7.4 percent for companies without.

For that research, “strong” representation was defined as a company’s board having three or more women, or the board’s percentage of women exceeding the country average.

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