What You Need to Know
- Forty-four percent of investors say they're bearish on the U.S. stock market for Q1, up from 34% in the year-ago quarter.
- The pandemic, lower investing costs and advancements in digital innovation are driving increased investor engagement, Schwab says.
- Clients' top concerns include inflation, market correction, political uncertainty, COVID's economic effects and rising interest rates.
A new survey of retail clients from Charles Schwab has found mixed results.
Forty-four percent of investors said they are bearish on the U.S. stock market for the first quarter, up from 34% in the same period last year, while 39% are bullish, down from 48% the same time last year.
Still, 58% of Schwab retail clients said they feel better off financially than they did a year ago.
“Clients remain cautious toward the stock market given factors like inflation and ongoing uncertainty due to the pandemic, but we continue to see strong client engagement overall,” Jonathan Craig, head of investor services at Charles Schwab, said in a statement.
“Among retail investors, more than three million new households opened accounts at Schwab and we saw 5.5 million retail daily active trades in 2021 — both up from 2020,” he said.
Craig said that while the pandemic is driving higher levels of engagement among individual investors, several longer-term drivers are also at play, including lower investing and trading costs, developments such as fractional shares that make investing more accessible, and advancements in digital innovation.