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Survey: Inflation and market volatility among top concerns of U.S. investors


Nearly three-quarters of American investors (73%) are very or somewhat worried about inflation affecting their retirement, according to a new survey from F&G, a Des Moines-based annuity and life insurance company. The company’s second annual Risk Tolerance Tracker asked American investors how the events of the last six to nine months have shifted their views on risk.

When it comes to retirement, investors’ concerns are not easing up. The survey showed that 61% of American investors are generally worried about their retirement income, which is fairly consistent with findings in 2020 (60%). When asked what their top concerns are specifically, investors noted they were most concerned about inflation (81%), increasing health care costs (78%) and market volatility (64%).

The Xcelerant Survey was conducted online by Directions Research from Sept. 23 to Oct. 1 among a demographically balanced nationally representative sample of 1,676 U.S. adults age 30 and older.

More than a third of investors (36%) said they would be more likely to explore a new financial product they haven’t used before post-COVID-19 than they were prior to the pandemic, as compared with 28% in 2020.  

Despite the growing interest in new investment vehicles, only 15% of respondents said they own an annuity. Even among baby boomers, the generation closest to (or already in) retirement, only 22% own annuities – signaling that while American investors are generally open to new products, increasing adoption of underutilized product categories like annuities remains a challenge.  

While American investors expressed a variety of worries related to their retirement, a majority (61%) said they don’t work with financial advisers, despite the fact that Americans who work with an adviser are nearly twice as likely as those who don’t to feel “very prepared” for retirement, according to recent data released by SRI International, a nonprofit research institute.

When respondents to the Risk Tolerance Tracker were asked why they don’t work with an adviser, the top reasons cited included high fees (36%), that they already know what they are doing (27%), and that they don’t feel they have enough investable income (26%).

“Our survey found external market conditions are primary concerns for American investors, and while it is important for them to be aware of these changes, it is also critical that they don’t panic – especially if their retirement is 20-30 years away,” said Chris Blunt, CEO of F&G.

“An adviser can help people figure out what really matters, design a road map and solutions to provide peace of mind around unexpected risks and help them avoid reactive decisions that can damage their long-term financial plan.”

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