October saw the smallest gap between the Affluent and Millionaire investor confidence indices since June 2015, when both were at 6.
Continued concern over market volatility drove a decline in the Spectrem Millionaire Investor Confidence Index (SMICI®), which dropped 8 points in October to 6, a four-month low. The Spectrem Affluent Investor Confidence Index (SAICI®) dipped 2 points to 4, a six-month low.
The indices, compiled by Spectrem Group, a market research and consulting firm specializing in the affluent and retirement markets, measure the investment confidence and outlook of the 16MM households in America with more than $500,000 of investable assets (SAICI), and those with $1MM or more (SMICI). This month’s survey was fielded between Oct. 14-21, 2015.
This is the third consecutive month that the SAICI has posted a decline and is the smallest gap between the Affluent and Millionaire indices since June 2015, when both were at 6.
Driving the declines in both indices were concerns about stock market conditions. In a Spectrem Group survey conducted in October, Affluent investors indicated that stock market conditions were the primary factor affecting their current investment plans. On Aug, 24, for example the Dow suffered its worst day in four years amidst concern over the slowdown of China’s economy. In September, the markets were further rattled following an announcement by the Federal Reserve that it would not, as some speculated or forecast, raise interest rates that month.
This is driving more Affluent investors to the investment sidelines. When asked in October how they intend to invest in the coming month, there was an increase in Millionaire investors who indicated they would refrain from investing.
Yet another factor driving down the Spectrem investor confidence indices in October was some disappointing economic news. The most recent Labor Department jobs report, released in the first week of October, found that the U.S. economy created 142,000, well below the forecast 200,000 jobs. The Dow closed up 1.2 percent that day, but not before it initially dropped 258 points, the biggest such market swing in four years. Another weak report found that U.S. retail sales edged up a mere 0.1 percent in September, fueling suggestions that the economy was losing momentum.
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.