Rarely does an opportunity present itself to record a significant shift in priorities among populations within a relatively short period of time.
But, this was recently the case for Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, Minneapolis, when it repeated a survey on the financial priorities of American Gen Xers and Baby Boomers that had initially been taken shortly before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
The result of the two surveys of 800 American consumers between ages 25 and 45, “Report on American Priorities,” is a picture of a nation going through “a wake-up call,” says Charles M. Kavitsky, senior vice president, chief marketing officer, Allianz.
“Prior to 9/11 people were more concerned about living too long and not having enough money than dying young,” he says. “Mortality was pretty far down as a concern.”
In other words, people were more interested in building their 401(k)s and investment portfolios than buying sufficient life insurance, Kavitsky explains.
The majority of those surveyed in August said their financial well being is a higher priority than their mortality, but that number has fallen 10% since the tragedy. Meanwhile, those who say they are more concerned about their mortality than their finances increased 8%, according to the survey.
While the findings show a shift in priorities, concern for family members was a consistent motivator for the majority of respondents, Allianz says.