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What’s concerning investors right now? It’s not the EU referendum

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Written by: Paloma Kubiak
31/05/2016
Investors are more concerned about China, the Middle East and low interest rates than the impending EU referendum, a study reveals.

When nearly 2,000 investors were asked what issues, if any, were of more concern to them than the EU referendum, one in four said they were more worried about slowing Chinese growth, while one in five said they were troubled over the tension in the Middle East.

The research from online platform The Share Centre also found that 20% were concerned about the continuing low interest rates, while 8% cited the US presidential election as the biggest issue.

Major political events such as the EU referendum inevitably have on impact on markets, but The Share Centre said the volatility can be short lived.

Instead, history has shown that such situations create buying opportunities, particularly when events impact an investment sector as a whole and all companies in that sector are affected.

Richard Stone, chief executive of The Share Centre, said investors are right to be concerned about some of the larger global long term influences, in particular the potential impact that slowing growth in China or tension in the Middle East may have on the global economy as a whole.

“This is particularly the case as it is now eight years since the global financial crisis of 2008 and yet global economic growth remains subdued,” he said.

“Investors are having to come to terms with the concept of prolonged low inflation, lower growth and low interest rates. These factors are particularly important for those investors seeking to derive an income from savings. While low inflation means that savings are not eroded as fast, this is currently driven largely by lower energy costs which those in retirement are often slightly less exposed to. Slower growth may impact the ability of companies to generate profits and pay dividends, while low interest rates continue to erode income on cash savings.”

He added the issues are even greater for those still accumulating wealth ahead of retirement as the size of the savings and investments pot required to generate the income desired is much larger than previously.

“This emphasises the need to save, to start early and the benefit of putting aside a little and often to help build that required savings pot,” he said.

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