Covid-19 hasn’t dampened investors’ return expectations over the next five years, according to a global survey from New York–based Schroder Investment Management Ltd.
The survey found that investors were expecting an average return of 10.9% over the next five years. Investors in the Americas had the highest expectations, predicting returns of 13.2%. Europeans were less optimistic, predicting returns of 9.4%.
By country, investors in the U.S. were the most optimistic, expecting an average return of 15.4%, followed by investors in Indonesia (14.8%) and Argentina (14.6%).
Japanese investors were the least optimistic, expecting an average return of 6%, followed by Swiss (7%) and Italian (7.9%) investors.
Globally, investors didn’t appear particularly concerned about the lasting economic effects of Covid-19. Only 6% expected the economic impact of the virus to persist for more than four years, while 21% expected the impact to last more than two years.
The pandemic did, however, cause many investors to make changes to their portfolios. Twenty-eight per cent said they made substantial changes, while 25% said they made some changes.
Some investors demonstrated an appetite for risk, with 20% moving portions of their portfolios into higher-risk investments. Nineteen per cent of investors did nothing to change their portfolios.
Older investors were less likely to make drastic changes to their portfolios, the survey found.
Three-quarters of investors aged 71 and older either adjusted their portfolios but maintained the same level of risk, or did not make any changes to their portfolios. Only 23% of millennials did the same.
Regardless of whether the pandemic has caused investors to shift their portfolios, it has caused them to think more about their investments, the survey found. Just under half (49%) of respondents said they now think about their investments at least once per week, compared to 35% before the pandemic.
Investors have also increased their focus on retirement. One-quarter said their number one priority for their disposable income was investing it in their pension, up from 10% three years ago.
Schroders commissioned an online survey of 23,000 investors from 32 countries in April. The survey was open to respondents who would be investing at least €10,000 (or the equivalent) in the next 12 months and who have made changes to their investments in the last 10 years.