Survey Says Negative Returns Expected by 41% of Retail Investors

A recent survey of U.S. investors reflects a climate of “confusion and disconnect,” with retail investors feeling “both bullish and bearish about the future of the stock market and whether they should put money in now.” This according to an article in Yahoo Finance.

The results of the survey, conducted by Yahoo Finance and Harris Polls and including 200 participants, showed that 41% expect negative equity returns over the next five years. But despite the outlook, the survey also showed that only 19% of respondents believe “it’s a good time to decrease exposure to the market, indicating that many are planning to stay the course.”

The dissonance is “hardly surprising,” the article notes: “The economy is in crisis with massive unemployment due to the coronavirus, but stocks, after plunging in March, have roared back and pushed the S&P 500 index well over 3,000, close to its record highs.” 

The survey also showed that women are approaching the market with more caution than men, which Harris CEO Will Johnson said is understandable: “One key reason,” he noted, “is that women disproportionately work in sectors that were shut down by the pandemic, such as retail, hospitality and education.”