US investors are the most bullish, despite COVID, with millennials leading the charge ______

02 Sep 2020

US investors have the most positive outlook globally, despite the economic downturn caused by the pandemic. This follows a survey conducted by Calastone – the largest global funds network – where investors were asked about their likelihood to invest in the markets since COVID. Nearly two thirds of US investors are undeterred despite recent events. Calastone surveyed investors across six global markets to assess current investment behaviours and appetite in the context of the current COVID pandemic, and future sentiment as the situation evolves. This can be seen in Figure 1, below.

Figure 1: Investment action since COVID-19 (Calastone and DJS Research)

In the US, 64% of investors have a positive outlook, having made new investments already, or considering doing so in the near future. Investor sentiment in the US leads all other markets, where an average of 54% of investors globally have a positive outlook. The study has also revealed that 44% of investors in the US were in fact actively making new investments because of COVID, looking to capitalise on the continued market volatility (see Figure 2).

Especially interesting is the clear correlation between risk-appetite and the age of investors, with much of the investor appetite coming from millennial investors. Whilst overall 44% of US investors actively made new investments in light of COVID, this rises to 59% for millennials. Only between 18% and 25% of baby boomers have done so. However, US baby boomers still remained more bullish in their outlook compared to other baby boomers across the other regions surveyed (see Figure 2).

Looking at the data across all age groups globally, the average figure across all regions for having actively made new investments in light of COVID is just 35%, rising to 44% for the US.

Figure 2: Investing in light of COVID – Generational Overview – UK Investors by age (Calastone and DJS Research)

Dan Kramer, Calastone’s Vice Chair, USA, comments on the data;

“It is encouraging to see such optimism in the markets in the US, and that such high levels of activity are being led by the younger generation of investors. Ongoing market volatility caused by COVID and continued uncertainty has made it an increasingly difficult environment for savers. Our research shows that younger investors are awake to the need to invest and put their cash to work.”

Methodology

Calastone surveyed 1,800 respondents, encompassing a sample size of 300 each for six key geographies – spanning the UK, USA, Germany, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand. Included within each region surveyed, more than half the respondents were proactive investors, having previously made active investment decisions to buy or sell into the market. The ages of those surveyed ranged across age bands from 24 to 70.

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