Dian's Column
Dian's Archive


Merrill Lynch report finds affluent feeling conservative and kinda stingy

By Dian Vujovich

Even though affluent investors acknowledge that they’re richer now then they were last year, they’re not big fans of taking on much risk.

According to Merrill Lynch’s Affluent Insights Quarterly report, 39 percent of those with $250,000 or more with investable assets see themselves as having a low investment risk tolerance. In fact, 33 percent of the 1000 who participated in the survey said that they would keep a good slice of their money in interest bearing accounts with 23 percent saying that will invest in cash. I’m not sure if that cash means kept-at-home or in money market type accounts. Either way returns would be low to zero.

Other survey findings:

-1 in 5 said that they had to use long-term savings and investments to cover short-term needs such as monthly expenses, to pay off debt or make up for income due to a family member’s job loss or income change.

-27 percent are cutting back on buying luxury items and on recreational activities.

-23 percent are either spending less on their day-to-day expenses or keeping a closer eye on managing the money they have.

-57 percent are concerned about whether they would have enough money to retire with 51 percent concerned about being able to afford their current lifestyle during their upcoming golden years.

-60 percent are concerned about raising taxes in 2011 with that same percentage already preparing for that possible change.

-And finally, score one for the Grinch: The survey showed that instead of purchasing big ticket items and electronics for their kids this holiday season, the most popular gifts they thought they’d give were likely to be a financial investment or cash gift.

To read more articles, please visit the column archive.

[ top ]