The Outlook Numbers Go Through The Roof


To say American optimism is high regarding the economy and its effect on household finances would be an understatement.

The Spectrem Household Outlook, the monthly study of investor opinions regarding the state of the American economy, in January reached its highest mark since January and February of 2005.

The Spectrem Household Outlook asks investors to rank four financial components in their lives in terms of how they perceive them to be progressing. In January, the overall Outlook among all investors reached 39.90, the highest rating by more than 8 points since February of 2005, when it peaked at 40.2.

Among Millionaires, the Outlook rose 13 points to 43.29, the highest mark since January of 2005, and among non-Millionaires it rose 10 points to 36.61, the highest recording since February of 2005. Combined, the overall Outlook was 8 points higher than it has been since a 9-point drop in March of 2005.

The component of the Outlook which produced the big jump was the Economy. For both Millionaires and non-Millionaires, the Economy rating jumped 30 points.

Here is a look at the outlook regarding each component:


43.60, up 30.8 points from 12.8 in December.

It is rare for both Millionaires and non-Millionaires to have the same consideration of any component in the Outlook on a monthly basis, but both segments recorded jumps of 30 points in January. For comparison, the Millionaire Outlook in January was 48.78 and in August 2017 it was 2.36. For non-Millionaires, the Outlook reached 38.58; it had a rating of -0.82 in June of 2017.


63.60, up from 57.60 in January.

Both Millionaires and non-Millionaires report a positive effect on their Household Assets in January, although the Millionaires’ bump was a full 10 points higher than in December. The non-Millionaire rating of 58.27 is the highest mark for Household Assets since June of 2014.

Even retired investors reported a 5-point bump in their Household Assets outlook to 56.25, a very high rating for investors with a more static financial picture than working investors.


26.00, a slight increase from 24.40 in December.

This is the one category in which Millionaires and non-Millionaires disagree in January, with Millionaires raising their outlook to 30.08 and non-Millionaires dropping their outlook to 22.05.

Female investors reported the higher rise in their Household Income outlook, from 21.11 to 25.00, a three-month high.


326.40, an increase from 19.20 in January.

While non-Millionaires reported a drop in their Household Income outlook, they reported a 10-point improvement in their outlook related to Company Health, from 17.80 to 27.56. Millionaires reported close to 5 points better to 25.20.

Again for comparison, the Company Health outlook among non-Millionaires in October was 5.05.


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