Recent turmoil in the financial services industry has lead many consumers to question how they manage their financial lives, both now and for the long-term. The global recession has compounded the sense of unease consumers feel about entrusting financial services providers with managing and safeguarding the financial fruit of their labors. Trust is at an all-time low.
Trends emerging show consumers are looking for alternative ways to manage their finances, whether through new tools or completely new institutions. In addition, consumers are practicing a frugality that is inspired by a fear of loss of long-term hard-earned assets, leading to a more risk-averse society than has existed for the last decade or so. A recent article in the Boston Globe (10/16/2011 “Gen Y asks: ‘Why should I have faith in the stock market’”) reveals that Generation Y, those born between 1981 and 1995, are displaying a conservative investment profile more akin to someone in their late 50’s considering retirement than someone in their youth with more than 30 years of investing to level out their buy and hold approach.