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Britons plan to invest more as confidence returns

Joanna Faith
Written By:
Joanna Faith

More than 90% of UK investors plan to maintain or increase the amount they invest and save in 2014, with UK equities set to be the most popular asset class.

The Schroders Global Investment Trends Report 2014 surveyed 15,749 investors across 23 countries, and found that almost two thirds (64%) of the 1,002 UK respondents are more confident about investment opportunities this year compared to less than half (41%) last year.

It revealed that 44% of UK investors plan to invest their disposable income and 17% will deposit it in a savings account. Only one-in-ten (9%) will use it to pay off debts, while a quarter (25%) intend to spend it on a luxury purchase – possibly explaining why the UK is experiencing a consumer-led recovery.

When it comes to individual asset classes, 67% of UK investors said they would be looking to invest in equities, with the most popular being UK equities (43%). Just 11% said they would invest in bonds.

The British love affair with property is set to continue with 13% favouring bricks and mortar and 10% looking at property funds this year.

These trends are mirrored globally with 82% of investors worldwide looking to maintain or increase the amount they invest and save this year, and 70% looking to invest in equities.

Indeed, investor confidence in developed economies is strong, with a particular spike in interest for Western Europe, with 40% of UK investors looking to this region in 2014 (up from 5% in 2013). Furthermore, almost a quarter (24%) are expecting North America to offer strong growth opportunities.

Asia retains its crown as the region that UK investors expect to drive the strongest overall growth in 2014, with 58% favouring the region. However, this expectation is not translated into action, and despite believing that Asia will deliver the best returns, just 13% of UK investors polled are planning to invest in Asian (including Japan) equities this year.

Robin Stoakley, head of UK intermediary at Schroders said: “Encouragingly, our report shows that once investors have paid monthly bills, a key priority is to invest with the majority of investors choosing to do so for their retirement. Indeed, almost two-thirds of the investors polled stated retirement as their main reason for saving. We welcome this as in the future Britons will have to become more independent in their retirement.”