Optimism about the state of the U.S. economy and markets is on the wane among both investors and advisors, according to a recent survey.
Investor optimism dropped from 62% in 2018 to 55% in 2019, while advisor optimism slipped from 66% to 55%, according to Nationwide Advisory Solutions’ survey of 1,021 financial advisors, of which 766 were RIAs and fee-based advisors, and 824 investors with at least $100,000 in liquid assets.
Fifty-four percent of RIAs and fee-based advisors are concerned about an economic recession in the U.S. and 56% are concerned about a U.S. bear market hitting in the next 12 months, according to the survey. And 56% of advisors believe market volatility will grow over the next 12 months, as do 66% of investors, Nationwide found.
"More than a decade after the Financial Crisis of 2008, concern about volatility is again top of mind for advisors and investors alike, and uncertainty is on the rise," Craig Hawley, head of Nationwide Advisory Solutions, says in a statement accompanying the survey.
The rising uncertainty, however, has been good for attracting new business: 62% of investors polled say they have an advisor, up from 51% in 2016, according to the survey.
At the same, 88% of RIAs and fee-based advisors say they have a strategy to protect their clients’ assets against market risk, Nationwide found. Sixty-two percent of advisors say diversification is the most-used strategy, but 53% say they also turn to fixed annuities, 48% say they use fixed index annuities and 44% resort to liquid alternatives, according to the survey.