SOURCE: Spectrem Group

April 18, 2013 10:37 ET

Spectrem Group Releases New Study: Mass Affluent Investors Need Financial Help, But Are Least Likely to Get It

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - Apr 18, 2013) - Main Street investors remain pessimistic about their finances five years after the financial crisis, according to the "2013 Mass Affluent Investor," a new study released this week by Spectrem Group. The Mass Affluent don't feel wealthy enough to require financial advising services, though they have a net worth of $100,000 up to $1 million (not including primary residence). A significant share feels they haven't built enough wealth to achieve financial goals like comfortable retirement. At the same time, Mass Affluents are reluctant investors who report a low tolerance for risk.

"Mass Affluent investors can benefit greatly from financial advising services, but they're significantly less likely than Millionaires to seek out the counsel of a financial advisor due to perceived risks," says George H. Walper Jr., president of Spectrem Group. "The latter leaves them vulnerable to running out of money in retirement and falling short of other financial goals. Considering the Mass Affluent represent some 28.4 million U.S. households, the problem has broad societal implications."

Highlights from the "2013 Mass Affluent Investor" report include:

  • Prevailing Pessimism: Less than half indicate their finances are in better shape now compared to a year ago and only 46 percent expect their situation to improve in the coming year.
  • Lone Rangers: Roughly one-fourth works regularly with a financial advisor. At the same time, less than one-third wants to be actively involved in the day-to-day management of their finances and a large share say they have little or no investment knowledge.
  • Risk Averse: Less than one-third is willing to take significant risk with portion of their investments, and 21 percent says they regret not investing more conservatively in the years leading up to the financial crisis.
  • Retirement: More than 40 percent are unsure of having sufficient income to live comfortably in retirement, and 40 percent plans to work past the age of 65. Close to 40 percent of those younger than 54 say their household is not saving enough.
  • Concerns: The Mass Affluent are primarily worried about maintaining their own financial position, but close to 60 percent are worried of the financial situation of children and grandchildren, and more than half indicate they are caring for aging parents. The economy, political environment, tax increase, inflation and national debt are also weighing on their confidence.

Further insights are available at Spectrem's Millionaire Corner, including:

About Spectrem Group
Spectrem Group strategically analyzes its ongoing primary research with investors to assist financial providers and advisors in understanding the Voice of the Investor. For more information, visit

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