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October 03, 2013 09:46 ET

BMO Private Bank: Three-Quarters of Minnesota's Affluent Are Bullish on Economic Prospects for the Country

- Half of high-net worth Minnesotans say they are better off today than before the recession

- They are among the most optimistic in the country about the health and financial sectors

- They are spending more or the same on travel, entertainment and hobbies than prior to the 2008 downturn

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA and ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA--(Marketwired - Oct. 3, 2013) - Affluent Minnesotans feel better than most high-net worth Americans about the future of the U.S. economy and say they are more financially stable now than they were before the economic downturn, a study released today by BMO Private Bank has revealed. The study is the second in a series by BMO Private Bank examining trends among high-net worth individuals (those with investible assets of $1 million or more) in Minnesota and across the country.

The study notes that three-quarters (75 percent) of affluent Minnesotans believe that the U.S. economy will improve over the next year, among the highest percentage across the country and well above the national average of 60 percent. Further, 50 percent say they are better off today than they were before the 2008 recession.

Other key highlights of the study include:

  • Affluent Minnesotans are most optimistic in the country about the health (85 percent), financial (65 percent) and agriculture (55 percent) sectors.
  • They are more bullish on stocks (85 percent feel it is a good investment) as an investment over the next five years compared to most high-net worth Americans.
  • They are spending more than or the same as before the recession on travel and vacations (92 percent), entertainment and leisure (85 percent) and collections and hobbies (80 percent).

"Our study shows that high-net worth individuals in Minnesota believe strongly in the American economy and are feeling secure and confident about its future," said Steve Marsich, Senior Vice President, BMO Private Bank. "This optimism will have a positive effect on them and the state as they continue to spend and invest strategically while helping spur economic growth."

Key National Findings:

On a national level, the study found:

  • Almost two-thirds (61 percent) of high-net worth Americans say they are better off today than they were before the recession.
  • Sixty percent of the nation's affluent are optimistic about what the future holds for the U.S. economy.
  • They are most bullish about the technology (80 percent), health (78 percent) and energy (77 percent) sectors and least optimistic about the prospects for the manufacturing (50 percent), agricultural (46 percent) and mining (43 percent) sectors.
  • They are spending more money or the same amount as before September 2008 in a number of areas, including:
    • Entertainment and leisure activities (86 percent)
    • Travel and vacations (83 percent)
    • Club memberships (81 percent)
    • Collections and hobbies (80 percent)
    • Clothing and accessories (77 percent)

About BMO Private Bank, a Part of BMO Financial Group

BMO Private Bank offers a comprehensive range of wealth management services that include investment advisory, trust, banking and financial planning to meet the financial needs of high net worth clients. Through integrated teams of experienced financial professionals, BMO Private Bank helps its clients realize their financial and lifestyle goals with solutions that are custom tailored and delivered with the highest level of personalized service.

BMO Private Bank is a brand name used in the United States by BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. Not all products and services are available in every state and/or location.

The online survey was conducted by Pollara between March 28th and April 11th, 2013 with a sample of 482 American adults who have $1M+ in investable assets (including a sub-sample of 40 Minnesota residents). The margin of error for a probability sample of this size is ± 4.5%, 19 times out of 20.

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