Chicago, IL (MMD Newswire) April 17, 2012 -- The prolonged economic downturn has become the top worry for most wealthy investors, according to new research from Spectrem Group. Four out of five millionaire investors cited the sluggish economy as a concern in the first quarter of 2012 compared to 70% in the same period in 2011. Similarly, 81% of mass affluent investors, whose net worth is between $100,000 and $1 million, cited it as a concern in the first quarter versus 74% in 2011's first quarter.
Only ultra high net worth investors, with at least $5 million in assets, didn't list the slow pace of the recovery as their chief concern. Instead, the national debt, cited by 82% of the wealthiest investors, and the contentious political environment, listed by 80%, beat out the lackluster economy. Even so, the economy came in third, with 77% of ultra high net worth investors naming it as a concern, up from 69% a year ago.
"With the unemployment rate remaining high, the continuing volatility in the stock market and gasoline prices, and a high-stakes presidential election looming, wealthy investors are anxious about the country's outlook," says George H. Walper, Jr., president of Spectrem Group. "You can expect a strong turnout among these voters."
Anxieties among the affluent about maintaining their own financial position and having enough money for retirement also increased from a year ago. In addition, a strong majority worry about tax increases:
- 70% of ultra high net worth investors
- 65% of millionaire investors, with net worth of $1 million to $5 million
- 64% of mass affluent investors
But tax concerns are not translating into major investment changes. Just 40% of the wealthiest, 28% of millionaire and 25% of mass affluent investors are making investment changes because of possible tax increases. "Overall, wealthy investors are more confident about their own finances, with roughly half optimistic that their personal financial situation will improve in 2012," notes Walper.
Among wealthy investors expecting their financial situation to grow stronger in 2012:
- 49% of mass affluent
- 52% of millionaire
- 55% of ultra high net worth
More insights from Spectrem Group's first-quarter investor reports are available on Spectrem's MillionaireCorner.com, including:
Spectrem Group conducts monthly surveys with wealthy investors on a variety of topics. In the first quarter, Spectrem surveyed 1,319 mass affluent, 1,303 millionaire and 482 ultra high net worth investors, with a focus on investment attitudes and behaviors.
About Spectrem Group
Spectrem Group is a strategic consulting firm specializing in the affluent and retirement markets, integrating proprietary research with expertise in building business, marketing and M&A strategies. Its professionals have held senior management positions at leading global companies.
About Spectrem's MillionaireCorner.com
MillionaireCorner.com is a powerful source for up-to-the-minute news and information for investors, about investors designed to fuel financial growth. It incorporates Spectrem Group research as well as outside information. In the future, the site will offer financial advisor referrals.
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