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Natixis survey says investors risk appetite rises

Despite global market volatility, investors worldwide are willing to take more risk and prioritize asset growth, but need advice to achieve same, according to a recent survey by Natixis Global Asset Management.
The survey clearly reveals Singapore and Hong Kong investors have lost confidence in traditional avenues and interestingly would opt for alternative investment strategies.
“To reach their savings and retirement goals in this persisting low interest rate and volatile economic climate, there is an urgent need for investors to be more aware of the fundamentals and merits of alternative investments when constructing their portfolio,” said Madeline Ho, managing director, head of wholesale fund distribution, Asia Pacific, Natixis Global Assets Management.
Majority of the respondents agreed that market volatility has undermined their ability to reach savings and retirement goals, eroded their confidence in the markets and expectations for future investment returns. 
The survey also highlights significant differences in retail investor goals across Asian markets.
The survey of 5,650 individual investors globally revealed that 44% of respondents said their willingness to take risk is increasing. This figure was 55% for Singapore where 350 investors were surveyed and 63% in Hong Kong. However, the risk-taking factor declined in Japan with the corresponding figure being only 30% among 250 surveyed.
Globally, 67% were in favour of asset growth as against principal protection, a figure that rises to 78% in Hong Kong and 82% in Singapore but drops to 46% in Japan. 
But investors remained conflicted with 77% globally preferring safety to performance. If forced to choose, 83% of those surveyed in Singapore would favour safety.
Globally, 56% respondents raised questions on merits of a ‘buy and hold’ strategy, a figure that rises to 70% in Singapore. In addition, 65% globally agree that a traditional approach to portfolio allocation of equities and bonds is no longer the best way to pursue returns and manage investments, a figure which rises to 70% in Hong Kong, 79% in Singapore but drops to 57% in Japan.
Interestingly, across the global sample, only 29% said that they already invested in alternative investments, while the same figure was 41% and 42% for Singapore and Hong Kong respectively, and dropped to 13% for Japan. 
A majority 77% of Singaporean investors and 74% in Hong Kong are open to the idea of investing in alternatives, however on advisery recommendation. About 73% in Singapore and 74% in Hong Kong have already discussed alternative investments with their advisers.
However, a large majority about 69% of respondents in Singapore noted they have very little or no understanding of alternative investments, dropping only slightly to 62% in Hong Kong. 
In Singapore 79% and in Hong Kong 80% are confident that their current investment approach will provide steady income in retirement, but only 39% in Japan believe so.
On seeking professional advice, 85% of respondents in Japan said they never used a financial adviser, compared to 29% in Singapore, and 5% of all global respondents. Globally, 47% said say they have an on-going relationship with one or more adviser, a figure that drops to 30% in Hong Kong and 3% in Japan.
Natixis ‘s 2013 survey of 950 investors in Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan was conducted by CoreData and is part of a larger global study of 5,650 investors in 14 countries from Asia, Europe, the Americas and the Middle East, who were surveyed online in June and July .

Part of the Mark Allen Group.