Fewer Americans are Optimistic About the Economy in 2024
Americans are keeping money out of the market with worries about inflation and interest rates
- Only 47% of Americans think the economy will improve in 2024
- 55% say they are keeping more money in high-yield savings accounts or money market funds because of interest rates
- 67% say in the past three months, prices are still too high and they are struggling to stay afloat
Less than half of Americans think the economy will improve in 2024 while many Americans are keeping more money out of the market, according to the Q4 Quarterly Market Perceptions Study from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life).
Just 47% of Americans say they think the economy will improve in 2024. This optimism has gone down in recent years. In Q4 2020, 66% of Americans said they thought the economy would improve in the coming year (54% in Q4 2021 and 48% in Q4 2022).
Market uncertainty and interest rates could be driving that view. Three in four Americans (74%) say they think the market will be very volatile in 2024. Even more, 77% think interest rates will continue to rise in the coming year.
Americans feel better about their personal finances. Most Americans (60%) say they think their financial situation will improve in 2024. Still, that number is down from 67% in 2020, 65% in 2021 and 61% in 2022.
Millennials are the most optimistic about their own economic potential in 2024. Two in three (67%) millennials say they think their financial situation will improve in the coming year compared to 59% of Gen Xers and 51% of boomers. Yet, millennials in particular are nervous to invest. While 51% of millennials say they are too nervous to invest in the market right now, just 40% of Gen Xers and 37% of boomers say the same.
Prices are still too high
Many Americans still feel the effects of recent inflation. Two in three (67%) say that prices are still too high and they are struggling to stay afloat in the pasts three months. Others (28%) say inflation is not affecting them personally. Moreover, Americans would like professional help to mitigate the risk. Financial professionals should take note as three in four Americans (74%) said they would stop using their current financial professional if they didn’t help effectively manage ongoing inflation concerns.
The effect of inflation on interest rates is also causing many to keep money out of the market. Most Americans (55%) say they are keeping more money in high-yield savings accounts or money market funds because of interest rates. Of millennials, 65% say they are keeping more money in high-yield savings accounts or money market funds because of rising interest rates. Fewer Gen Xers (46%) and boomers (48%) said the same. The majority of Americans (61%) also say they would rather have their money sit in cash than endure market swings.
“High interest rates in savings accounts or money market accounts can be enticing,” says Kelly LaVigne, Vice President of Consumer Insights, Allianz Life. “A high-yield savings account is a good place to build an emergency fund or save up for something in the near future. But, those accounts aren’t likely to provide the greatest return on money over the long term. For long-term goals like retirement, you’ll want to take part in the market and invest in ways that still mitigate potential risks like longevity and inflation.”
*Allianz Life conducted an online survey, the 2023 Q4 Quarterly Market Perceptions Study in November 2023 with a nationally representative sample of 1,005 Respondents age 18+.
Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America does not provide financial planning services.
This information is being provided only as a general source of information and is not intended to offer you specific financial guidance. Before you make any decisions regarding your financial situation, please consult a financial professional or tax professional to discuss your individual circumstances and objectives.
About Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America
Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, one of the Ethisphere World’s Most Ethical Companies®, has been keeping its promises since 1896 by helping Americans achieve their retirement income and protection goals with a variety of annuity and life insurance products. In 2022, Allianz Life provided additional value to its policyholders via distributions of more than $7.7 billion. As a leading provider of fixed index annuities, registered index-linked annuities, and fixed index universal life insurance, Allianz Life is part of Allianz SE, a global leader in the financial services industry with approximately 150,000 employees in more than 70 countries. Allianz Life is a proud sponsor of Allianz Field® in St. Paul, Minnesota, home of Major League Soccer’s Minnesota United.
Annuity Alliance is not affiliated with Allianz. This article is for informational and educational purposes only. It should not be used to make a buying decision. If you would like to speak with a financial professional, please use Annuity Alliance’s contact form.