E*TRADE Study Reveals Investors’ New Year’s Resolutions

Top investing resolutions among experienced investors are to learn more about investing and trading, use digital investing tools more often, and increase retirement contributions

(Graphic: Business Wire)

NEW YORK--()--E*TRADE Financial Corporation (NASDAQ: ETFC) today announced results from the most recent wave of StreetWise, E*TRADE’s quarterly tracking study of experienced investors. Results reveal that the top investing resolutions for 2016 among surveyed experienced investors are to:

1. Learn more about investing, trading, and the markets.
2. Use digital tools more often to make sure they are diversified and meeting their goals.
3. Increase their retirement plan contributions.
4. Adjust the risk tolerance of their investing style.
5. Seek the help of investing professionals.

“The desire to learn more and use tools more often in 2016 suggests that experienced investors increasingly want to feel like they are in the driver’s seat,” said Lena Haas, SVP, Retirement, Investing and Savings at E*TRADE Financial. “Given the explosion of free educational resources and easy-to-use online tools, it has never been a better time for investors to start taking more control over their finances.”

As the New Year approaches, Ms. Haas offered the following observations on the state of long-term investing:

  • Investors are going digital for their annual reviews. Nearly three out of five investors surveyed — and nearly two out of three millennials — plan to use a digital tool to review their portfolios at year-end.
  • Retirement worry looms. Investors surveyed throughout 2015 worried more about saving for retirement than they did about the loss of a job or personal injury.
  • Short-term decisions can undermine long-term goals. Roughly a quarter of all investors surveyed took an early withdrawal from their qualified retirement accounts, and on average, half of those investors later regretted it. To combat emotional decision-making, Ms. Haas suggests establishing a long-term plan mapped to your goals and risk tolerance, supported by disciplined contributions.

For the full report of the Q415 StreetWise study results, click here.

E*TRADE helps investors balance today’s needs with tomorrow’s goals through pioneering digital tools and personalized, smart guidance, both online and from nearly 300 seasoned Financial Consultants on the phone or in-person at branches throughout the U.S. To learn more about how E*TRADE helps investors make retirement easier, visit etrade.com/retirement.

For useful insight from E*TRADE and third-party investment professionals, follow the company on Twitter, @ETRADE.

About E*TRADE Financial

E*TRADE Financial and its subsidiaries provide financial services including online brokerage and banking products and services to retail customers. Specific business segments include Trading and Investing and Balance Sheet Management. Securities products and services, including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, education, and online tools are offered by E*TRADE Securities LLC (Member FINRA/SIPC). Managed Account Solutions are offered through E*TRADE Capital Management, LLC, an investment adviser registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Bank products and services are offered by E*TRADE Bank, a Federal savings bank, Member FDIC, or its subsidiaries and affiliates. More information is available at www.etrade.com. ETFC-G

About ResearchNow

ResearchNow, a leading digital data collection provider, powers market research insights. They enable companies to listen to and interact with the world’s consumers and business professionals through online panels, as well as mobile, digital, and social media technologies. Their team operates in over 20 offices globally and is recognized as the market research industry’s leader in client satisfaction. They foster a socially responsible culture by empowering their employees to give back. To find out more or begin a conversation, visit www.researchnow.com.

About the Survey

This wave of the survey was conducted from October 1 to October 6 of 2015 among an online U.S. sample of 1000 self-directed active investors who manage at least $10,000 in an online brokerage account. The survey has a margin of error of ±3.1 percent at the 95 percent confidence level. It was fielded and administered by ResearchNow. The tracking study fields quarterly at the beginning of each quarter and does not reflect data from the complete quarter. The panel is broken into thirds of active (trade more than once a week), swing (trade less than once a week but more than once a month), and passive (trade less than once a month) investors. The panel is 65 percent male and 35 percent female with an even distribution across online brokerages, geographic regions, and age bands. Millennials defined as investors age 25 to 34. Gen X defined as investors age 35 to 44. Baby Boomers defined as investors age 55+.

Referenced Data

Please choose which two of the following best complete the below sentence for you. 'In 2016, my financial resolution is to...'
** %= Combined First/Second Choice Among Investors Who Selected a Resolution **
  TOTAL   AGE: 25-34   AGE: 35-54   AGE: 55+
...learn more about investing, trading, and the markets 41% 38% 39% 46%
...use online tools more often to make sure I am properly diversified and meeting my goals 38% 36% 33% 46%
...increase the amount I contribute to my retirement plan 33% 42% 42% 17%
...invest more aggressively 31% 37% 35% 19%
...invest more conservatively 30% 19% 27% 40%
...seek the help of investing professionals when I need it 26% 27% 23% 29%
Other   2%   1%   1%   3%
As we approach the end of the year, which, if any, of the following will you complete? (Select all that apply)
TOTAL AGE: 25-34 AGE: 35-54 AGE: 55+
Use an online tool to check that my portfolio is properly allocated and is meeting target goals 57% 65% 57% 53%
A check-in with a financial advisor 36% 35% 35% 35%
I don't plan to check on my portfolio at the end of the year   18%   12%   18%   22%
How often, if at all, do you worry about each of the following?
** Summary of 'Always/ Frequently' **
TOTAL AGE: 25-34 AGE: 35-54 AGE: 55+
Loss of a loved one 29% 35% 27% 26%
Not having enough saved for retirement 27% 36% 35% 16%
Not understanding how to invest smartly 18% 28% 19% 11%
Personal relationship issues 17% 27% 17% 9%
Loss of a job 17% 28% 20% 4%
Physical injury   16%   25%   15%   13%
Have you ever taken out money from an IRA or 401(k) before the age of 59.5?
TOTAL AGE: 25-34 AGE: 35-54 AGE: 55+
No, I have never taken out money from an IRA or 401(k) before the age of 59.5 75% 66% 71% 85%
Yes   25%   34%   29%   15%
Have you ever regretted your decision to take money from an IRA or 401(k) before the age of 59.5?
TOTAL AGE: 25-34 AGE: 35-54 AGE: 55+
Top 2 Box 56% 71% 57% 32%
Very much regretted 20% 24% 21% 13%
Somewhat regretted 36% 47% 37% 19%
Regretted a little bit 18% 16% 19% 20%
Did not regret at all 26% 14% 24% 48%
Bottom 2 Box   44%   29%   43%   68%

Important Notices

E*TRADE Financial, E*TRADE and the E*TRADE logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of E*TRADE Financial Corporation.

© 2015 E*TRADE Financial Corporation. All rights reserved.

E*TRADE Financial Corporation and ResearchNow are separate companies that are not affiliated. E*TRADE Financial Corporation engages ResearchNow to program, field, and tabulate the study.


E*TRADE Media Relations
Thayer Fox, 646-521-4418
E*TRADE Investor Relations
Brett Goodman, 646-521-4406


E*TRADE Media Relations
Thayer Fox, 646-521-4418
E*TRADE Investor Relations
Brett Goodman, 646-521-4406