Lazy. Entitled. Narcissistic. Spendthrifts. Digitally obsessed. Google the term “Millennial” (ages 21-36), and these are some of the words you will find to describe a whole generation.
It’s all wrong.
Our research into how 1,000 Millennials invest paints a portrait of investors who, far from being entitled or undisciplined, are extremely conservative. In fact, they’re more savers than investors.
Here are four things you should know.
1. The World War II generation lived through the Great Depression. The Millennials came of age during the Great Recession. So it’s no wonder their risk profiles are extremely similar.
2. Millennials hold more than half of their assets in cash (52%) and less than one-third (28%) in equities. This is super-conservative, so much that it’s directly counter to traditional long-term investment allocation advice.
Average cash allocation is high (42%) even among older Millennials (ages 30-36) who have at least $100,000 in assets. So it’s not just about cash needs; it also reflects wariness about financial markets.
3. Forget beating the market. Millennials have humble investment goals.
4. If you give a Millennial some cash, it’s not necessarily going into the stock market.