People in Leinster have really lost their belief in conventional investment assets such as property and shares, according to a new survey conducted by leading financial advisors Clear Financial. The survey asked people of different age, gender, region and socio economic group which out of four investment classes (renewable energy, gold, property and shares) do they think will perform best over the next 20years.
Overall, the Leinster results strongly favoured renewable energy at 61%. Other findings were as follows
21% of respondents from Leinster think gold will perform best
8% of respondents from Leinster believe the property is most likely to perform best
Just 7% of respondents in Leinster said that they think shares will be the most lucrative investment over the long term.
Michael Bradley, Managing Director of Clear Financial commented on the findings, “While we’ve seen a definite swing towards alternative investment types we were pretty shocked by the absolute drop in confidence in the more traditional investment classes of property and shares. Findings from Ireland overall revealed that 58% of people favour renewable energy will just 7% favour property. Recent economic events have weighed heavily on the Irish public and it doesn’t look like investor sentiment towards these assets is likely to return any time soon”.
The responses from different regions were relatively consistent, with rural dwellers expressing a higher preference for renewable energy (64%) than their urban counterparts (53%).Dublin showed a higher favourability for gold than the rest of the country with 27% of respondents in Dublin choosing this investment option as being the most valuable in the long term.
The survey looked at responses by age grouping also and while renewable energy was by far the most popular choice across the different age groups, this was particularly the case with younger adults of 18-24 years (68%). This younger group were also most likely to choose property as a secondary investment (16%) and least likely to select gold (9%). Conversely, older respondents (45 and above) expressed a slightly higher preference (approx. 25%) for the perceived security of gold when compared with their younger counterparts.
Michael continued, “Those respondents in the 35-44 year old grouping were least likely to favour property as an investment with just 6% saying that they believe that this will perform most strongly. I think when it comes to property, the split by age identifies who been most stung by the property bubble with many of those aged from 35-44 are likely to be in negative equity at the moment or may have suffered major losses on investment properties. Interestingly, this group were the largest proponents of the value of shares with 11% saying they see long-term growth here”.
Gender & Age
The Clear Financial survey found no significant difference when the results were analysed by respondents’ gender overall. However, there were some attitude gaps in some areas. Younger males (under 25) were most likely to choose renewable energy as a long-term investment - 72% compared with 63% of their female counterparts. However, this gap appears close in the older people get. Younger females however were drawn slightly towards property as a long-term investment with almost 1/5 choosing this option.
Michael went on to say, “We weren’t surprised by the fact that respondents from a farming background expressed the highest preference for renewable energy with 71% choosing this option. We have received a high level of interest from the farming community in our fund over the last 12 months”.
Of the socio economic groups the survey revealed that farmers were also least likely to choose property (8%) and even less likely to choose shares at just 1%.
Michael concluded, “The results of our survey simply highlight an on-going trend in Ireland’s investment culture. People are largely turning their backs on investment types which they have been burned by in the past. When you contrast this stable investment environment of renewable energy and gold with the current equity market volatility which has proven to be all risk and no return over the past 10 years, it’s not difficult to see why so many people are drawn to the different investment concepts”.