confidence is growing among Italian investors

Optimists on the situation of the country e less disheartened nn the opportunity to invest in the financial markets: it is the photograph taken of Italians from the spring edition of the ANIMA Observatory – 2024, created in collaboration with the market research companies Eumetra and Dogma Research – who discover themselves less risk averse but without too rosy expectations about future returns.

The study – conducted via the internet and regularly monitors the trends, needs and habits of Italian families regarding finance, savings and investments – was carried out between 29 February and 7 March 2024 on a sample of 1,006 adults “bankrolled”, holders of a bank account or bank/postal account and with access to the Internet, representing approximately 35 million people. Of these, the 50% are also investors.

As mentioned, the sentiment on the situation in Italy continues to improve, substantially consistent with the latest findings: 23% of banked and 30% of investors think that Italy is in a better position than a year ago, a marked improvement compared to the autumn, when these percentages stood at 19% and 26% respectively. Examining expectations for the future, greater caution is found but the trend remains the same: 22% of banked people and 29% of investors expect an improvement in the situation in the next 12 months, an increase of 1 percentage point for both categories compared to the last detection. Among the less positive notes is inflation, which remains a problem for 85% of banked people and 82% of investors.

Confidence in the country continues to increase

They grow savings, risk aversion in sharp decline -Despite the increase in prices representing a concern, the number of families who save is increasing again: banked families who manage to consistently set aside part of their income go from 53% to 57%, while among investors this figure grows from 72% to 77%. In this context, investment choices see a growth in preference for financial products, the first option for 55% of banked people and 74% of investors (in September the figure was 52% for the first and 73% % for seconds). Real estate remains in second position, although preferences are decreasing, followed by liquidity. A particularly interesting piece of data is that relating to risk aversion: out of the total sample, the percentage of those who think that it is not a good time to invest in the financial markets drops from 52% to 45%. In particular, the percentage of those who are convinced that it is “not at all” a good time to invest continues to decline: from 34% in March 2022 this figure has more than halved, up to the current 16%.

Satisfied with their investments, realistic about expected performance

Among them investorsnoteworthy is the contemporary increase in search for interesting returnsi – a priority for 20%, compared to 14% in September – and the decline in those who assign greater importance to the protection of invested capital, decreasing from 27% to 22%. From three consecutive surveys, the number of those who declare themselves very or quite satisfied with their investment products has grown: among investors, the number of those who agree with this statement goes from 48% in March 2023 to 58% currently. However, when asked about expected returns in the next five years, this sample does not appear to be too optimistic: 24% expect a zero or even negative return; 69% had a positive return but less than 5% and only 7% still had a return superior .

Sustainable consumption, but pay attention to returns

Italians are once again assigning more importance to sustainable consumption decisions with low socio-environmental impact, as demonstrated by the growing number of those who consider these choices “very” or “quite” important, which is increasing from 80% to 84% among banked people e from 85% to 86% among investors. Examining the responses of those faced with the choice between sustainability and financial performance, for the first time, among the banked, the percentage of those who favor one choice or the other are almost equal: 49% assign greater importance to the former, while 51% say they rate the latter as more important. This is a rebalancing trend that has continued with a certain consistency for at least two years: in March 2022, 26% assigned greater weight to performance, compared to 74% of those who instead said they “preferred” sustainability.