SOURCE: BMO Harris Financial Advisors

December 27, 2013 09:00 ET

BMO Harris Financial Advisors New Year's Study: Indiana Residents Resolve to Improve Finances in 2014

INDIANAPOLIS, IN--(Marketwired - Dec 27, 2013) -

  • More than 75 percent of Hoosiers surveyed will be making a 2014 New Year's resolution by December 31st
  • Thirty-seven percent surveyed will be making financial resolutions, well above the national average
  • Forty-one percent of residents surveyed in the state have a financial plan

According to a study by BMO Harris Financial Advisors, 76 percent of Hoosiers surveyed will be making at least one New Year's resolution for 2014. Thirty-seven percent of all resolutions made by midnight on December 31st in the state will be about setting goals related to personal finances, which is above the national average of 28 percent.

In fact, financial New Year's resolutions trailed only health and fitness resolutions (50 percent) and were ahead of:

  • Personal (learn a new skill, read more, etc.) - 33 percent
  • Love life (start dating, get married, etc.) - 21 percent
  • Career (work more/less, get a promotion, etc.) - 14 percent

Twenty-four percent of respondents surveyed in the state reported that they would not be making a New Year's resolution for 2014, well below the 32 percent national average.

"It's good to see so many Hoosiers resolving to commit to improving their financial situation in 2014," said Tom Thornton, Regional Sales Manager, BMO Harris Financial Advisors. "However, those making financial resolutions have a much better chance of seeing them through if they have a well-thought out financial plan." 

A financial plan helps people work towards their short and long-term goals like the purchase of a new home, saving for a child's education or investing for retirement. It provides a roadmap that outlines the path from where they are today to where they want to be in the future. At BMO Harris Financial Advisors, the process begins with a financial advisor reviewing a person's finances -- including assets, liabilities, income, spending habits and investments -- then building a personalized plan that takes these items and risk tolerance into account and fits with the rest of his/her life.

Indiana and Financial Plans

The study found that 41 percent of those surveyed living in the state currently have a financial plan. Of this group:

  • Eighty-four percent are confident that their financial plan will help them achieve their goals.
  • Eighty-two percent reported that it has helped them achieve their goals in the past.
  • Sixty-one percent wish they would have created a financial plan sooner.

Of those Hoosiers who do not currently have a financial plan, the most commonly cited reasons include:

  • Do not have enough money to justify having a financial plan (37 percent)
  • Do not know where to start (27 percent)
  • Have not consulted anyone (24 percent)
  • It is not a priority (20 percent)

"Anyone can benefit from a personalized financial plan," added Mr. Thornton. "Contacting a financial advisor is the first important step to getting the help needed to put a plan in place." 

Key National Findings:

  • Sixty-eight percent of those Americans surveyed will be making a New Year's resolution for 2014.
  • Setting goals related to personal finances will account for 28 per cent of all resolutions made; other areas include health and finances (39 percent), personal goals (27 percent), love life (16 percent) and career (16 percent). 
  • Fifty-three percent who have made financial New Year's resolutions in the past have kept them -- with women being better than men at seeing them through (57 vs. 46 percent).
  • Forty percent of those Americans surveyed have a financial plan.
  • Eight-five percent of those with a financial plan feel that it has helped them achieve their goals.
  • The top reason identified for not having a financial plan is "do not have enough money to justify having one" (39 percent).

About BMO Harris Financial Advisors
BMO Harris Financial Advisors, Inc., offers a comprehensive range of investment advisory products that include financial planning strategies and estate planning strategies to meet the financial needs of high-net-worth clients. Offices are located throughout the U.S. Learn more at www.bmoharris.com/financialadvisors.

BMO Harris Financial Advisors(SM) is a trade name of BMO Harris Financial Advisors, Inc. Securities, investment advisory services and insurance products are offered through BMO Harris Financial Advisors, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC. SEC-registered investment adviser. BMO Harris Financial Advisors, Inc. and BMO Harris Bank N.A. are affiliated companies. Securities and insurance products offered are: NOT A DEPOSIT - NOT INSURED BY THE FDIC OR ANY FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AGENCY - NOT GUARANTEED BY ANY BANK - MAY LOSE VALUE.

Estate planning requires legal assistance which BMO Harris Bank and its affiliates do not provide. Please consult with your legal advisor. 

The survey was conducted by Pollara with an online sample of 1,001 Americans 18 years of age and over (including 100 Indiana residents), between November 20th and November 26th, 2013. A probability sample of this size would be accurate to +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20.

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