The political climate in Washington is not quite as significant as it was one year ago as a deterrent to Affluent investors and their financial goals.
Twenty percent of Affluent respondents said that the political climate was the most serious threat to achieving their household’s present financial goals, and that is down from 26 percent reporting the same concern in December of 2012.
At that time, Congress had not reached an agreement over the fiscal cliff, the mandated tax hikes and spending cuts scheduled to take affect the first of the year. In 2013, in contrast, the Senate and House approved a bipartisan $62 billion budget agreement that promised to avoid another government shutdown when a temporary funding measure expires Jan. 15.
But while the political climate has calmed, there are several flashpoints ahead, including how to allocate the money in the budget and whether extended unemployment benefits, set to expire at the end of December and leave 1.3 million people without benefits, will be restored.
In addition, another debt ceiling looms when the nation reaches its borrowing limit in February. And that distant thunder you hear is the 2014 mid-term elections, which will not lend itself to bipartisan cooperation.
Thirteen percent of Affluent investors said they consider market conditions to be the most serious threat to achieving their household’s financial goals at this time. This is of heightened concern to Millionaire respondents, 18 percent of whom cited market conditions as the most significant impediment to achieving their financial goals.