Millennial Investors Shunning Stocks
Posted On October 21, 2011
As the leading edge of the Millennial generation dips its toes into investing, they are more leery of the stock market than previous generations. A survey conducted by MFS Investments finds that Millennials are just as likely to keep their investment dollars in cash instruments, like savings accounts and money market funds, as they are to invest in stocks – a more conservative approach than older generations and a more cautious allocation than is normally recommended for young investors.
Millennial fears about the stock market stem from the 2008 crash and recession as well as the fact that the market has declined by 1% over the past 10 years, its first decade-long trough since the Great Depression. The survey found that Millennials invest about one third of their funds in stocks and about the same amount in cash instruments. Another fear factor: the survey also found that about half were employed as opposed to two-thirds a decade ago.
In perhaps the most telling number of the survey, 40% of Millennials agreed with the statement, “I will never feel comfortable investing in stocks.” If that sentiment lasts, the Great Recession will prove to be as generation-defining for Millennials as the Great Depression was for Matures.