Out of economic collapse come lasting changes in the way they think about money
America’s affluent households are optimistic about U.S. economic recovery, not to mention their own financial standing, according to a new survey released by PNC Wealth Management.
More than half (52 percent) of respondents report that their personal net worth has grown at least 20 percent over the past five years, while almost three-quarters (73 percent) believe they have “a lot of control over their financial future,” according to the secenth annual “Wealth and Values Survey Investors’ Outlook.
The survey represents a nationwide cross-section of 1,115 adults (18 or over) with more than $500,000 in investible assets and a minimum annual income of $150,000.
More than one-quarter (28 percent) are optimistic about the U.S. economic recovery compared with just 10 percent a year ago. In 2001, more than three-quarters (76 percent) of affluent respondents said they were pessimistic about the economy. That number has fallen to 51 percent this year.
More than two-thirds (67 percent), however, are pessimistic about the global economy.
Affluent investors are feeling better this year than last about stock market performance (41 percent vs. 19 percent last year), “individual components in my portfolio” (44 percent vs. 26 percent) and the real estate market (36 percent vs. 9 percent).
What do these affluent investors consider to be their best and worst investment moves made over the past year? Sixty-four percent said a proactive step that failed to work as planned was their worst move, while 32 percent said doing nothing was their biggest investment faux pas.
Twenty-two percent said their most successful move was a shift of investment away from stocks, while 17 percent cited the purchase of high-tech stocks.
Which sectors do affluent investors consider to offer the greatest opportunities over the coming year? More than half (56 percent) chose technology, followed by healthcare and energy/utilities (46 percent).
What have affluent investors learned over the past five years? Eight-eight percent believe it is “more important than ever to live within my means,” while three-quarters (76 percent) say they have developed greater appreciation for the non-material wealth in their lives. More than half state that these feelings are “the new normal…and how the future is going to be.”
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.