Recent data released by Indias top five brokerages reveal that there has been a marked rise in the number of women investors in the stock market during the COVID-19 pandemic. Data from Zerodha, Axis Securities, ICICI Direct, UPStox and 5Paisa show that over the last two years, the proportion of women investing in equities has increased from 16 per cent to 24 per cent.The brokerages suggest that the benchmark surge in stocks to records have risen by about 40 per cent since January 1, 2020, and this fact has emboldened women to invest more in stocks and move beyond traditional forms of physical asset-building. The increase is also related to more available free time to analyse trends and, in some cases, with more savings at hand to be invested, the data shows.Data from ICICI Direct shows that stock investments remain a favourite among women on the platform, and rose from 56 per cent transactions in 2019 to 67 per cent in 2022. At the same time, mutual fund investments have declined from 40 per cent to 28 per cent. Other brokerages show a similar trend. The pandemic has seen a steady rise in the number of women investors, B Gopkumar, the MD and CEO of Axis Securities, told the Economic Times. Due to the uncertainties arising from the pandemic, women have stepped up, moving from being savers to investors. Currently, we have about 21.49 per cent of active women investors on the Axis Securities platform.According to Axis Securities data, women investors in the 18-25 age group rose from 0.4 per cent to 1.5 per cent, while those in the age group of 26-45 went up from 10.01 per cent in 2018-2019 to 12.3 per cent in 2021. Those in the 45-60 age group also showed significant increases, going from 4 per cent in 2018-2019 to 5.2 per cent last year. Numbers from Upstox show that since 2020, the platform has had an increase of over a million women investors. Of these women, around 60 per cent are millennials, and more than 85 per cent belong to Tier II and Tier III cities. More than 35 per cent of these women investors are also homemakers.*Image used for representative purpose.