Having adequate retirement savings is the top priority even among affluent investors, according to a new
The company said that 50 percent of affluent investors – those with at least
"Retirement looms large even for higher-net-worth Americans who recognize the importance of saving and investing," said
In addition, the survey found that more than half of affluent investors first met with a financial advisor at a relatively young age, rather than waiting until they approached retirement. Thirty- four percent who have met with a financial advisor first did so before the age of 35, and 26 percent had that first meeting between the ages of 35 and 44.
According to a release, the 2015 TIAA-CREF Affluent Investor Barometer was conducted by an independent research firm and polled a random, nationwide sample of 1,242 adults who are financial decision makers for their household and have at least
Market optimism among affluent investors
The majority of affluent investors believe the economy is strong. Sixty-three percent report they are bullish on the economy, with men far more optimistic than women (73 percent versus 51 percent), and those with greater assets more positive (70 percent of those with
Affluent investors still have concerns, however. When asked what would be most likely to make them feel less confident about the economy, 28 percent say geopolitical instability, followed by market volatility (24 percent) and an increase in unemployment rates (17 percent).
Stocks (76 percent) and mutual funds (73 percent) are the most common investments within these individuals' investment vehicles, and 63 percent say stocks offer the most opportunity for growing their wealth, with real estate a distant second at 12 percent. However, 35 percent of respondents say their greatest concern about their investments is losses due to market downturns.
Why do affluent investors look to financial advisors?
These concerns, among others, may prompt many affluent investors to seek out financial advice. Sixty percent of affluent investors use an advisor, compared to 39 percent of the general population1 who say they rely on an advisor. Affluent investors also prefer the personal touch of a financial advisor to more static sources of financial information. More than half (57 percent) cite their financial advisor as their most reliable source of financial information – significantly more than financial newspapers (23 percent) and financial websites (20 percent).
During times of market turmoil, investors with financial advisors are more likely to be prepared: 53 percent of respondents with an advisor say they took no action during recent market volatility because their portfolio was positioned to ride it out, compared to 41 percent of respondents without an advisor.
"With so many factors to consider, it's not surprising that the affluent individuals who consult with a financial advisor say they benefit from their advisors' expertise," Andrade said. "Advisors can offer individuals a long-term perspective on investing and help them make smart decisions when they experience market volatility or major life changes, so they can stay on the path to a secure financial future."
Survey Methodology: The survey was conducted by
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