According to a survey of 383 potential retail investors in Switzerland conducted by the fintech start-up Alpian, there are still many barriers to making investment decisions. The survey, conducted among individuals aged 25 to 65, reveals that 18% of respondents have never invested before. While the barriers to investing vary by investor profile, the survey found that investors are looking for simplicity, human touch and personalized services from their banks.
Knowledge gap as the first obstacle to investment
Among the main obstacles identified, the knowledge gap related to investment decisions is the most cited, by 40% of respondents. This rises to more than one in two (53%) when looking only at inexperienced investors or those who have never invested before. Limited time to manage investments (33%) comes in second place, and partly explains the knowledge gap for some respondents. The complexity of the investment processes (32%) and the lack of trust in banks (31%) are also considered as major obstacles for more than a third of respondents.
Different barriers depending on the investor’s profile
In addition, the survey reveals that the gender and generational belonging of investors are decisive in their relationship to investment.
Thus, even though there are many reasons why women should invest and build wealth, 25% of the women surveyed say they have never invested, compared to only 15% of men. In addition, more than half of the women surveyed (54%) cite lack of knowledge as the main obstacle when it comes to investing, compared to only 32% of men who instead identify lack of time (37%) as a major barrier.
Age is also a notable differentiating factor. For 38% of Millenials (25-34 years old), the lack of trust in banks is one of the main obstacles to investment. This concern is less of a priority for the older generation (35-54), with only 27% citing this lack of trust as a major obstacle.
Investors looking for simplicity
In addition to the lack of financial knowledge, the desire for more simplicity and proximity to current social and environmental issues is very clear among respondents. Nearly two out of three participants (60%) say that investing would become more important to them if it were simpler and more accessible. In addition, nearly a third of respondents identified a lack of clarity about the nature of their investments (28%) and the absence of simple platforms to invest in sustainability and impact (29%) as major disincentives to investing, reflecting the growing importance of engagement in the investment process. This trend goes hand in hand with a desire for more personalized services from banks, with 38% of respondents wanting an experienced financial advisor at their side.
“This survey is a real eye-opener for a company like Alpian. The data shows us that investment priorities and desires are evolving and need to be addressed effectively by market players. It is clear that today’s investors want more than just a transactional relationship with their bank. They are looking for a true partner who can help them associate their investments with their convictions and commitments. This is precisely the choice we made when we created Alpian and put Wealth beyond money as our core conviction”, commented Roman Balzan, Director of Marketing, Branding and Communication at Alpian.
More information on the survey here.
The Alpian survey was conducted in June 2021 among 383 mass affluent* respondents in the German and French speaking parts of Switzerland, aged between 25 and 65.
*with a CHF100’000 to CHF1 million liquid net worth
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Alpian is a Swiss financial technology company incubated by the private bank REYL & Cie and incorporated in October 2019. Alpian has applied for a full banking license to Switzerland’s Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) and intends to launch its core product and services range in the course of 2021, subject to the issuance of a full banking licence by FINMA. www.alpian.com
Ahead of its banking launch, Alpian created the education platform i-vest.ch to inspire and encourage people about topics related to finance, investing and wealth. By demystifying wealth, i-vest aims to help anyone reach their personal financial goals. It is the first pragmatic step to build tools to guide wealth creation and enable the pursuit of “Wealth beyond money”. www.i-vest.ch