High Hopes for the High Earners? America’s Affluent Speak

As one of our research participants put it, when asked to describe his optimism about the economy: “I believe there are indicators that the economy is recovering… unemployment is falling slightly, the real estate market is improving, companies are beginning to offer raises, etc.”

This is powerful stuff given it comes from one of the most influential markets in America: Affluent individuals, defined as adults living in households with at least $100,000 in annual household income.

As you will see in my monthly column featuring insights from the Ipsos Mendelsohn Affluent Barometer, a monthly study of the mindset of America’s affluent, half of Affluents are now optimistic about the U.S. economy. And that’s not all:

-53% now expect they personally will be better off in 12 months, down slightly from 58% in February, but generally continuing an upward trend over the six months, and also a one-year high

-70% are very or somewhat optimistic about the organization they work for, up from 62% in February 2012 (although expectations about whether or not their employer will increase spending are decidedly mixed)

-40% now consider stocks/equities to be an excellent or good investment at this time – the fourth consecutive monthly increase in this metric, and up from 34% since February 2012. Seventy-one percent are at least somewhat confident of getting a positive return on their investments this year.

-34% would spend significantly or slightly more in the event the economy continues to improve, up from 27% in January 2012

Read the full article in today’s MediaPost