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MILLENNIALS AT THE GATE 

PROFILING THE GENERATION-Y INVESTORS

| Swing Alpha on 7 Mar 2017 12:00 AM
MILLENNIALS AT THE GATE   PROFILING THE GENERATION-Y INVESTORS

Headline: A millionaire at 20! Reading news about individuals hitting it big at a young age is no longer unusual. People born between the years 1982 and 2004 are branded as the millennials.

Their population came after Generation-X and in terms of numbers, has the earned the distinction of being the biggest generation in America today. This honor was previously held by the Baby Boomers.  

THE  BIRTH OF GEN-Y

Also known as Generation Y, the millennials greeted the dawn of the 21st century or the new millennium. They dominate the internet universe and the digital realm. The growing number of start-up companies dwelling on technology and other innovative tech applications is a sign the landscape is changing. The millennials are at the gates of the financials market.

THE EARNING POTENTIALS OF GEN-Y

Since millennials are perpetually wired to the World Wide Web, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook fame is obviously the runaway role model. Imagine how Mr. Zuckerberg’s staggering net-worth can dwarf the economies of many countries.

Luck and perfect timing can be attributed to the success of famous millennials without intending to belittle their extraordinary talents. However, a greater number of millennials is still locked in struggle, consumed by a desire to find their individual niche.

Key distinguishing factors of this demographic group are their unique preferences in lifestyle, spending, and personal finance. Is salary the primary consideration for employment? The generation is divided.

  • While a subset of this group would go for top dollar paychecks, others would prefer jobs that offer flexibility and with greater balance between work and life.
  • Those who are seeking higher paying jobs need the money to defray student loans and still have disposable income to keep them financially afloat.
  • Many are attracted to start-ups with less pay and benefits but the opportunities for learning are greater and more fulfilling.
  • For others with a mindset that salary is not yet significant, they venture into business or self-employment which they see as the springboard to wealth if successful.
  • Millennials are fearless and determined to make an impact even if the future is uncertain.
  • The set-up of the modern day economy works well for the enterprising millennial.
  • There is an abundance of prospects to earn income on the side.
  • Personal finance and investments are not yet the focus. But once settled in, the idea of making more money will come into play.

THE FINANCIAL WISDOM OF GEN-Y

Millennials are the offspring of the baby boomers and the Gen-X who are both money conscious. Whereas their parents have financial wisdom and experience, the Gen-Y needs guidance and direction in financial planning.

However, some interesting facts came out from a recent survey sponsored by Fidelity Investment on the topic of Millennial Money Study. The results are quite interesting.

Key Findings On Financial Planning


1.    About 65% of millennials view their parents as role models and trusted financial advisors.



2.    47% of millennials who went on their own acknowledged they are not yet financially independent. They draw from their parents’ pockets to pay for cell phone bills, utilities or groceries.



3.    60% of the millennials disclosed they have started savings for the future or retirement.



4.    59% have emergency funds to cover unforeseen expenses or an amount to last 6 ½ months of living expenses.



5.    46% admitted they are savers compared to 44% who said they are spenders.



6.    Most millennials, about 86% of them, placed their emergency fund in a regular savings account and about 14% keep them in cash.



7.    Only 9% consider themselves an investor even when 63% have investment accounts.



8.    Being a tech-savvy horde, they prefer to do financial transactions using mobile apps for convenience: accessing checking/savings account and paying bills including credit cards.



9.    Amassing savings and building an emergency fund tied as the top financial concern of 44% of the millennials.



10. On the matter of financial security in the future, 25% worry about it “all the time.”


The survey was taken from July 27 to August 2, 2016, with 615 adult respondents. Of the total, 49.5% or 305 were millennials ages 25-35. The sample size may not be large but the survey results give you a glimpse of Gen-Y’s monetary awareness.

ATTRACTING THE GEN-Y

Wealth managers, financial advisors or stockbrokers can take the cue from the survey results. The younger millennials maybe a little short on cash at the moment, but those with steady income stream are savers.

  • This generation needs to be dealt with differently.
  • The traditional approach may not work.
  • Speak their language and understand their financial disposition.
  • Social media is the avenue for financial education.
  • Since they are devoted to anything that is tech-based, they will tend to gravitate towards user-friendly investment platforms.
  • Millennials rely on feedbacks from social media rather than on-site, eye-to-eye talk with financial consultants.

RESPONDING TO THE GEN-Y

Looking at the stock market as an investment option, perhaps there are two main roadblocks for the millennial: 1) they do not want to be turned away because of insufficient funds to meet the minimum requirement; and 2) the lack of market knowledge.

The Gen-Y thinks they can take their time unaware that investing early is the way to increase wealth. Establish the urgency and harp on the fact that despite the volatility, stocks have outperformed cash and bonds based on historical performance.

Wait until the millennials get the drift on investments. But once they do and with their accumulated capital on hand, they will be the next high-net-worth individuals. Open the gates, the gang’s all here.

3 Mar 2017 4:38 PM | Anonymous

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