US investor optimism up 14%, according to UBS survey

Swiss financial firm UBS’s (NYSE: UBS) UBS Wealth Management Americas (WMA) unit said it has launched its Investor Watch report, a new quarterly survey of US private clients’ investment decisions and primary concerns as the nation approaches the November 6 election.

According to UBS, the first Investor Watch shows individual investors’ optimism returning, their flight to cash receding and their intentions to reinvest in financial markets and spend on experiences.

The survey shows that individual investors are more optimistic than a year ago:35% are optimistic about the short-term (12-month) economic outlook, versus 21% a year ago. And while 38% are pessimistic about the economy, that number is dramatically lower than a year ago, when 60% felt this way.

Younger private clients aged 25-49 are more optimistic about the short-term outlook and are more willing to take risks; 45% of younger investors are optimistic about the short-term economic outlook, compared to only one-third of older investors.

The vast majority of investors feel they have the right amount of cash. High net worth investors, especially, plan to decrease cash holdings and reinvest in the markets over thenext year.

According to the findings, 61% % of US private clients are highly concerned about the size of the national debt in terms of potential impact on their financial goals and objectives. Rising health care costs and the national election were close behind on the list of investors’ worries.

Investors are spending more time and money on leisure and experiential activities and less on shopping.

The UBS Investor Watch survey was conducted among more than 2,000 US investors, including current UBS clients, UBS said.