SOURCE: BMO Harris Financial Advisors

December 27, 2013 09:00 ET

BMO Harris Financial Advisors Study: Twenty-Seven Percent of Minnesotans Surveyed Will Be Making a New Year's Financial Resolution for 2014

MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwired - Dec 27, 2013) -

  •  Nearly two-thirds of the Minnesotans surveyed will be making a 2014 resolution by December 31st
  • Almost half of those surveyed in the state have a financial plan
  • Ninety-four percent of those surveyed are confident that their financial plan will help them achieve their financial goals

According to a study by BMO Harris Financial Advisors, 63 percent of Minnesotans surveyed will be making at least one New Year's resolution for 2014 and 27 percent of all planned resolutions made by midnight on December 31st will focus on personal finances.

In fact, resolutions related to money trail only health and fitness (40 percent) and personal/self-improvement resolutions (30 percent), and are ahead of:

  • Love life (start dating, get married, etc.) - 18 percent
  • Career (work more/less, get a promotion, etc.) - 15 percent

Thirty-seven percent of respondents in the state reported that they would not be making a New Year's resolution for 2014.

"It's encouraging that so many in the state will be focusing on financial issues in 2014, especially since personal finances touch on so many other aspects of a person's life," said Pete Schmidt, Regional Sales Manager, BMO Harris Financial Advisors. "However, it's important to understand that one's chances of achieving key goals involving dollars and cents improve significantly if you have a financial plan in place." 

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.

Minnesotans and Financial Plans

The study found that 47 percent of those surveyed living in the state currently have a financial plan. Of this group the vast majority have confidence in their plans:

  • Ninety-four percent are confident that their financial plan will help them achieve their goals.
  • Ninety-two percent reported that it has helped them achieve their goals in the past.

Of those 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 (39 percent)
  • Personal financial situation is too volatile (31 percent)
  • Have not consulted anyone (31 percent)
  • Never thought of doing a financial plan (25 percent)

"It's never too late or too early to take charge of your finances with a carefully thought-out financial plan," added Mr. Schmidt. "It can be helpful to anyone at any stage. The key is to identify important goals and work with a financial advisor to create a roadmap to reach those goals." 

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 percent 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 Minnesota 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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