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How 3,750 affluent investors will tweak their habits post Covid-19

UBS recently interviewed investors in 15 markets including China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and the United Arab Emirates. Here are some of its key findings.

Three quarters of affluent investors approached by UBS in May agreed: life won’t be the same after the pandemic. 

Over 3,750 investors were surveyed for the latest edition of UBS Investor Watch. 

They were based in 15 markets including China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and the UAE.

Respondents who were aged 25 to 30 had at least $250,000 in investable assets.

Those who were aged 31 to 39 had at least $500,000, while those aged 40 and older had $1m or more in investable assets. 

Here’s how they plan to change their lifestyles in the days ahead, according to the report. 

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Three quarters of affluent investors approached by UBS in May agreed: life won’t be the same after the pandemic. 

Over 3,750 investors were surveyed for the latest edition of UBS Investor Watch. 

They were based in 15 markets including China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan and the UAE.

Respondents who were aged 25 to 30 had at least $250,000 in investable assets.

Those who were aged 31 to 39 had at least $500,000, while those aged 40 and older had $1m or more in investable assets. 

Here’s how they plan to change their lifestyles in the days ahead, according to the report. 

Forsake cities

UBS said 46% of respondents were considering moving to less populated areas.

Some 75% of respondents said Covid-19 made them reassess what was important to them. 

Around the same number of respondents said it made them realise that life is short. 

While UBS’ report did not go into specific reasons, the virus has spread rapidly in densely-populated cities in countries such as India. 

Over in Singapore, 41% of respondents planned to move to a less populated area. The country has more than 49,000 coronavirus cases and 27 deaths.

Travel less and work remotely

UBS found that 70% of respondents planned to travel less in the ‘new normal’. 

Meanwhile, 67% of them intended to step up on remote working. 

These findings were in line with what 200 Singapore high-net-worth investors who took part felt, as seven out of 10 of them intended to travel less. 

This shift is why banks like DBS have recommended against investing in airlines and travel-related stocks. 

But fund management giant BlackRock has its sights set on domestically-focused opportunities in travel and tourism. 

Healthy top priority

A clear majority – 88% of respondents – named staying healthy as their top priority, UBS said.

Around 86% of Asian investors shared this sentiment that was slightly lower than the global average. 

The same proportion of them wanted to protect their family more, and this is higher than the global average of 82%.

Some 67% of all investors said Covid-19 had impacted how they thought about money. 

They are worried about healthcare costs increasing, and not having enough savings if another pandemic strikes, according to the report.

 

Move closer to family

Around 52% of respondents revealed plans to move closer to family members. Some 77% of respondents wished to spend more time with their families. 

UBS said millennials were also more likely to have increased their financial support for family and friends.

This was reflected by 34% of interviewed millennials, that was double that of baby boomers. 

In the Asia-Pacific region, only 28% of millennials supported their loved ones more with Covid-19. 

Meanwhile, 31% of millennials in the US and 42% of millennials in Europe ex-Switzerland concurred.

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