Caution Ahead for Mass Affluent Investors


Mass Affluent investors, much like their wealthier counterparts, are indicating a cautious investment mindset, according to our wealth segment study of investors with a net worth between $100,000 and $1 million (not including primary residence).

Spectrem Wealth Segmentation Series: Asset Allocation, Portfolios and Primary Providersreportfinds that a majority are planning to hold a portion of their moneys in reserve. Roughly six-in-ten indicate they will hold their money in short-term investments, such as savings accounts, while three-in-ten will invest in Money Market Funds and one-in-five in Certificates of Deposit.

About four-in-ten (38 percent) are likely to invest in Mutual Funds this year, while one-third of Mass Affluent investors plan to invest in individual equities.

Across age groups, Mass Affluent investors ages 45-54 comprised the highest percentage of those who indicated they would invest in Mutual Funds (49 percent). Among the 58 percent who said they would invest in savings accounts, 61 percent are Baby Boomers ages 55-64.

Only 15 percent of Mass Affluent investors said they would invest in international investments in 2016, which is unchanged from the previous year, an indication of continued concern over global political and economic instability as well as terrorism threats.

A substantial majority of Mass Affluent investors indicate no interest in investing outside the United States. Less than 15 percent said they would in Europe (13 percent), China (10 percent), Canada (8 percent) and the United Kingdom and Japan (6 percent each). Analyzed by age, seniors ages 65 and up are the least likely to indicate they would invest internationally.

When we asked Mass Affluent in what industries they would be most likely to invest in, the highest percentage said technology (50 percent) and health care (45 percent). Older investors who are at least 45 years-old, are more likely than younger investors to indicate they will invest in health care, while those younger than age 54 are most likely to report they will invest in technology.

Analyzed by wealth level, the wealthiest Mass Affluent investors with a net worth between $750,000 and $999,000 comprised the highest percentage of those who said they would invest in Technology, while those with a net worth between %500,000 and $749,000 comprised the highest percentage of those who said they will invest in Health Care (49 percent) and Pharmaceuticals (38 percent).

The likelihood of investing in the communications sector increases with age.