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October 03, 2013 09:46 ET

BMO Private Bank: Two-Thirds of Arizona's Affluent Are Upbeat About the Future of the U.S. Economy

- Almost half of high-net worth Arizonans say they are more financially secure than they were before the 2008 recession

- They are most bullish about the health, energy and tech sectors

- Their spending on entertainment and travel is the same or more than before the 2008 recession

PHOENIX, ARIZONA--(Marketwired - Oct. 3, 2013) - A study released today by BMO Private Bank has revealed that affluent Arizonans are optimistic about what the future holds for the U.S. economy. 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 Arizona and across the country.

According to the study, 65 percent of Arizona's affluent expect the U.S. economy to improve over the next year. Additionally, almost half (48 percent) say they are financially better off now than they were before the 2008 recession.

Other key highlights of the study include:

  • Affluent Arizonans consider stocks (65 percent) and real estate (58 percent) as the investments most likely to deliver solid returns in the next five years.
  • They see the health sector (83 percent) as the most promising in which to invest, followed by the energy and technology sectors (73 percent each). They are least optimistic about the mining (40 percent) and agricultural (28 percent) sectors.
  • Arizona's affluent are spending more or the same since before the recession on entertainment/leisure activities (88 percent) and vacations (85 percent).

"Confidence in the economy has given Arizona's wealthy greater peace of mind," said Mike Sullivan, CFA, Regional Director - Investments, Western US, BMO Private Bank. "They are relaxing more, spending more, and making more thoughtful decisions about their investment strategies - all of which will continue to help stimulate economic growth within the state."

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.

CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are registered trademarks owned by CFA Institute

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 Arizona residents). The margin of error for a probability sample of this size is ± 4.5%, 19 times out of 20.

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