Unlike Gen X and the Baby Boomers, Millennials experienced extremely difficult markets and economic conditions during their formative years, including two major bear markets. During the early stages of their careers, they’ve faced both the housing bubble implosion of 2008 and 2020’s COVID-19 Pandemic, which, they are still grappling with. And they carry a great deal of debt. On average, Millennials have $78,396 in consumer debt and $37,172 in student loan debt. Between seemingly endless market tumult, and potentially insurmountable debt, many Millennials have developed a skeptical view of investing.
In fact, 43% of Millennials have elected not to invest at all. Only 51% of them want to invest for retirement3. In addition to that, those Millennials who do elect to invest, tend to be averse to stocks. Approximately 30% of this age demographic identified “cash”, not stocks, real estate, or even bonds as their favorite investment. Unfortunately, this reluctance to invest may have significant consequences for Millennial’s long-term financial futures.
The pensions that once served as the bedrock for their parents’ retirement plans are disappearing. And because of fundamental changes in our population, and the COVID-19 Pandemic, Social Security's massive trust fund may be unable to pay full benefits as of 2034. As of 2020, the average life expectancy at birth for the total U.S. population was 77.8 years. That’s a long lifespan to sufficiently keep funded. As a matter of necessity, the quality of Millennials’ retirement largely rests on what they do now to save and invest.
A conservative investment approach could be an expensive mistake. From 1926 – 2020, the U.S. stock market returned roughly 10% annually. Long-term government bonds returned only 5.5% annually. There is just no comparison. Additionally, Not allocating more money to stocks, via mutual funds or ETFs (or directly) could cost Millennials as much as $3 Million in retirement savings.
As an investor, time is one of your greatest allies. The sooner you start, the more time your investments have, to potentially grow. But you must be in it, to win it.
Click the video below to learn why Millennials (as well as most Americans) should be investing in the stock market:
 Experian, “2019 Consumer Debt Study”,
 Debt.org, “Students & Debt”,
 Yahoo Finance, “43% of Millennials Aren’t Investing – and That’s a Problem”,
 The Balance. Lemke, Tim. “How Millennials Can Invest $10,000”
 NPR.org. “A New Report Says The COVID Recession Has Pushed Social Security Up A Year”
 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Provisional Life Expectancy Estimates for January through June 2020. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/vsrr/VSRR10-508.pdf
 Bankrate.com. Time is on your side: A guide for millennials to start investing with confidence. https://www.bankrate.com/investing/millennial-guide-to-investing/
 Nerdwallet. O’Shea, Arielle & Lesaffre, Stephane. Avoiding the Stock Market May Cost Millennials $3.3. Million. https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/investing/avoiding-the-stock-market-may-cost-millennials-3-3-million/
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