January 12, 2005

Election Over, Affluent Households Regain Optimism

CHICAGO (HedgeWorld.com)--Spectrem Group announced that its Affluent Investor Index, which measures the investment outlook of households with US$500,000 or more in investable assets, more than doubled in December, to a "mildly bullish" level unseen since June.

Meanwhile, the more exclusive Spectrem Millionaire Index also rose. This index measures the investment outlook of households with US$1,000,000 or more in investable assets and has been mildly bullish since October.

"Affluent investors put election uncertainty behind them in December and returned to a mildly bullish outlook--regaining a level of optimism last seen in early summer. These investors appear to be refocusing their attention on long-term issues such as the economy, unemployment, inflation and terrorism ... Combined with increased optimism among millionaires, this is a welcome development for an important investor group as we begin the New Year," said George H. Walper, Jr., president of the Spectrem Group.

The Spectrem Group is a strategic consulting firm specializing in the affluent and retirement markets.

Its Affluent Investor Index is based on 250, 10-minute telephone interviews each month. The Millionaire Index is based on a subset of that survey group that can vary each month but is typically drawn from more than 100 interviews.

In response to an open-ended question about the news events driving their economic outlook, 13 % of affluent investors said the economy is the biggest threat to their household financial goals, 8% said it was unemployment and 6% said inflation. When Spectrem asked the same question in September, 17% said the economy, 14% said the presidential election and 10% said unemployment.

Contact Bob Keane with questions or comments at: bkeane@investmentadvisor.com.

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