In the month of March, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped below 26,000 at the start of the month but remained well above 25,000 into the start of spring.
But there was no growth in the market, and the solid American economy showed no signs of becoming more solid, which raised concerns among investors.
As a result, the Spectrem Investor Confidence Indices reflected decreased enthusiasm for investing overall, and decreased Stock investing among Millionaires most of all.
Among all investors, individual Stock investing remained steady at 30.4 percent, a second month at or above 30 percent after four months below that mark. But there was no growth in that area, and among Millionaires individual Stock investing fell to 31.7 percent, more than 5 percent below February’s high 37.3 percent investing interest.
Among non-Millionaires, individual Stock investing climbed to 29 percent, the highest level since September.
Stock Mutual Fund investing increased overall due to renewed interest among Millionaires, and there were slight increases in Individual Bond and Cash investing, reflecting caution among investors. The percentage of those Not Investing, investors who stated no plans to increase investing over the next month, remained flat at 33.2 percent, with a slight decrease among Millionaires and a slight increase among non-Millionaires.
Here is a comparison of investors based on specific segmentation:
Millionaires vs. Non-Millionaires
- The March Spectrem Confidence Indices in March could not be more mixed, as Millionaires showed greater interest in Stock Mutual Fund, Individual Bond and Cash investing and non-Millionaires had higher investment percentages in Individual Stock and Real Estate investing. The Real Estate investing percentage among non-Millionaires climbed to 9.7 percent, the highest percentage since May of 2018, as the housing market reported lower mortgage rates but continued low numbers in available homes on the market.
Men vs. Women
- In Spectrem Confidence indices among women fell in March although they increased interest in investing in Stock Mutual Funds, Individual Bonds and Cash. They had a slight increase in those Not Investing, but none of the percentage changes were significant.
- Male investors reported increased interest in individual Stock, Stock Mutual Fund and Individual Bond investing, and a small dip in those Not Investing, which are all positive indicators. But the overall index for males remained flat.
- Both men and women reported a large jump in Real Estate investing in March.
Republican vs. Democrat
- Both Republicans and Democrats backed away from Individual Stock investing in March but Republicans were gung-ho about other investment opportunities, with a huge jump in Stock Mutual Fund and Cash investing. Almost 42 percent of Republicans planed to invest more in Stock Mutual Funds, after only 28 percent did so in February.
- Among Democrats, Cash investing fell to 21.43 percent, a drop of 3 percent, and those Not Investing rose to over 38 percent from 30 percent the month before. Democrats are pulling back from a stock market that is still high but not showing a lot of growth.
- The overall indices among Republicans and Democrats showed a drop in confidence, and Democrats once again dipped into negative territory after a month in the positive range in March.
Working vs. Retired
- There was a definite difference in how working and retired investors responded to economic events in March. Working investor showed increased enthusiasm for all investment categories with a huge jump in individual Stock investing to 38.5 percent and in Real Estate investing to 14.6 percent, Among working investors, those Not Investing fell to 22.3 percent, the lowest percentage since February of 2018.
- Retired investors, on the other hand, pulled away from Stock investing overall, but bumped up Cash investing. The drop in Individual Stock investing among retired investors went from 27.1 percent to 17.8 percent. As with all other segmentation, real estate investing rose among both working and retired investors.
- The Spectrem Investor Confidence index for Millionaire working investors fell in March from 16 to 12. The indices for all retired investors fell into negative territory, as did the index for retired Millionaires.
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