U.S. millionaires are reporting a sunnier outlook about the economy, although nearly half of them donâ€™t feel truly rich. Fidelity Investments released its fourth Millionaire Outlook survey this week, which studies the investing attitudes and behaviors of more than 1,000 millionaire households throughout the country.
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The survey found that four in 10, or 42% of millionaires do not actually feel wealthy. This is down four points from 2009; however, those who said they did not feel wealthy reported they needed to have at least $7.5 million in investable assets to begin feeling wealthy again.
Those who did report feeling wealthy said they began to feel that way with $1.75 million in investable assets.
Gail Graham, executive vice president of Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services, said the the main factors that affect whether a person actually feels wealthy or not is their age and how close they are to retirement.
â€œ$1.75 million, at 30 or 35 years old is a lot of money. But at 59, you are very different,â€ Graham said. â€œIt's not about money, it's about psychology. Wealth means that people will not worry, and have disposable assets and income. The notion of wealth has changed.â€
The survey uses a scale where +100 represents the best outlook, zero is neutral and -100 is the worst outlook. The survey found that millionaireâ€™s view on the current economic climate is still â€œvery weakâ€ at -54, but it is up greatly from last yearâ€™s number, -91.
The millionairesâ€™ future outlook is at its highest rate in the surveyâ€™s four-year history, however, at +37. Graham said that they are predicting an increase in business and consumer spending. Nearly Â¾ of the millionaires surveyed are self-made, so they are in a position to know what spending will be like because they are decision makers in their own businesses, she said.
â€œThey have a vantage point as owners and executives,â€ Graham said. â€œWe look to them to see where we are today, and where we are going.â€
Four in 10 millionaires also reported that their biggest financial concern was having enough money to support their lifestyle in retirement. Of this group, 69% reported that they have a financial plan, and 81% are being more careful about spending.
Graham said much of the millionairesâ€™ concerns stem from lifestyle in retirement.
â€œIn all likelihood, they have figured out what it will take to live in retirement, and are putting on top of that what the cushion needs to be,â€ she said. â€œPeople get more fearful about the future as they face retirement.â€