We don’t need to tell you that 2022 has been a challenging year for investors — what with interest rates soaring, the stock market plummeting, and the onset of another crypto winter.
What you might be surprised to know: There’s some good news here. In a recent survey, we asked 1,000 investors how they managed their portfolios in 2022, how they’re feeling about the market, and what their predictions are for 2023*.
While you might expect some anxiety or pessimism (and there was some), investors overall remain positive after a difficult year. Here’s what they had to say about stocks, crypto, how they coped with investing stress — and more.
Note: We rounded percentages to the nearest whole number, so some data sets may not add up exactly to 100%.
*The survey was completed on October 5, 2022 and was conducted using a general U.S. population data set of 1,000 adults age 18 and older. Survey did not include known SoFi members or a SoFi member data set.
Key survey facts and findings
Before we dig into the details, here are some of the standout results.
• 93% of survey respondents continued to invest, despite the current market conditions.
• Men were more likely to invest than women, and invest more money as well.
• 78% of crypto investors are generally optimistic that values will rebound.
• And remarkably: 1 in four (25%) of investors had no regrets about 2022
Last highlight: How did investors cope with stress in 2022? Hobbies!
In general, investors stayed the course in 2022.
While the market hasn’t been kind to investors over the past year, it certainly hasn’t stopped many of them from investing. 93% of our respondents kept invested in 2022.
93% of respondents have invested in 2022
When it comes to the amount people have invested so far this year, men were more likely than women to invest — and invest more money when they did:
• $0 – $499: 24%
◦ Male: 44%
◦ Female: 56%
• $500 – $999: 23%
◦ Male: 50%
◦ Female: 49%
• $1000 – $4999: 26%
◦ Male: 57%
◦ Female: 43%
• $5000+: 21%
◦ Male: 68%
◦ Female: 32%
Many investors are still hoping to cash in on crypto.
It’s no secret that the crypto market has taken a beating, especially with the crash of FTX . Nonetheless, people are still holding on to their crypto investments.
45% of respondents say they have cryptocurrency in their portfolios. 65% of them even said they invested more than $500 in 2022. Most crypto investors (65%) are male and under the age of 55.
45% of respondents have cryptocurrency in their investment portfolio.
Over the past few years, cryptocurrency has become a more widely-accepted investment vehicle. Many investors have invested in crypto this year. Of these investors:
• 65% have invested $500 or more in 2022
• Less than 3% haven’t invested any money into crypto in 2022
• Only 7% of respondents aged 55 or older are invested in crypto
• 65% are male
And of those who invested $5000 or more in crypto in 2022, 80% are male.
While the crypto market is currently in a steep decline, most investors with cryptocurrency in their portfolios have invested at least $500 in 2022. Here’s what crypto investing looks like in 2022.
• $0 – $499: 32%
• $500 – $999: 23%
• $1000 – $4999: 26%
• $5000+: 16%
Only 3% of investors who have cryptocurrency in their portfolio haven’t invested anything into cryptocurrency this year.
78% of investors are either confident or cautiously optimistic the crypto market will bounce back
The crypto market remains volatile as rumors of a global recession continue to swirl. Despite this financial climate, most investors are hopeful of the future.
Of the 45% of respondents who have crypto in their portfolio:
• 78% of investors are at least “cautiously optimistic” that the crypto market will bounce back
• Only 5% of respondents believe crypto is “dead.”
Overall, the crypto market still has plenty of believers. Whether that optimism will pay off remains to be seen.
Nearly 90% of people have invested in non-stock market-related assets.
Non-traditional market assets are on the rise due to stock market volatility. In fact, nearly 90% of our respondents invested money into a non-stock-market-related asset. Crypto was the most common non-traditional investment choice.
Certificate of deposits (CDs), Real estate investment trusts (REITs), and gold were the next most popular options. One respondent even told us they invested in Magic the Gathering trading cards—definitely a niche investment choice, but representative of investments that aren’t directly impacted by the stock market.
Here’s a full list of all the responses we received:
• Certificate of deposits (CDs): 24%
• Real estate investment trusts (REITs): 20%
• Gold or other commodities: 20%
• Crypto: 48%
• Private equity funds: 22%
• Government bonds: 19%
• Other or none: 11%
Here’s what investors’ portfolios look like right now.
Nearly a third (32%) of respondents have less than $25,000 in their investment portfolio. Here’s a breakdown:
• $0 – $24,999: 32%
• $25,000 – $49,999: 22%
• $50,000 – $99,999: 21%
• $100,000 – $199,999: 12%
• $200,000+: 14%
Most investors (nearly 75%) also invest highly into stocks. Cryptocurrency, mutual funds, and cash were the next most popular investment types.
• Stocks: 72%
• Cryptocurrency: 45%
• Mutual funds: 41%
• Cash or cash equivalents: 38%
• Bonds: 31%
• Exchange-traded funds (ETFs): 30%
• Real estate: 23%
• Index funds: 21%
• Private equity: 14%
• Other: 2%
Market volatility has impacted investors’ purchase and investment decisions.
Market volatility has impacted investors at all ages and stages, but it hasn’t slowed them down. Not only have many people continued to invest during these uncertain times, market volatility has inspired investors to adjust their strategies and spending.
More than a third of respondents (37%) say market volatility has caused them to make impulsive investment decisions.
Market volatility has caused some investors to respond emotionally, with over a third of respondents (37%) saying market volatility has caused them to make impulsive investment choices.
31% of these impulse decisions were made by investors aged 18-24. In fact, the younger you are, the more likely you are to make impulsive or emotion-driven financial decisions. Here’s the age breakdown of those who made an impulse move due to market volatility:
• 18-24: 31%
• 25-34: 23%
• 35-44: 23%
• 45-54: 17%
• Older than 54: 7%
Of all the people who made impulsive investment decisions, 54% of our respondents say they’re happy with their choice. Specifically, only 20% of them regret them.
Maybe these rash decisions taught investors important lessons about the market. Maybe some are confident they’ll rebound.
One third of respondents (33%) had to cancel or delay plans or purchases in 2022 because of money lost on investments.
Many investors’ finances were impacted by the bear market: 33% said they had to cancel or delay plans in 2022 because they lost money on investments.
Ultimately, these mistakes prevented some investors from going on vacations, buying homes, and starting businesses. When we asked those who had to cancel or delay plans specifically which plans were impacted, here’s what they said:
• Going on a trip: 27%
• Making a major purchase (home, vehicle, etc.): 22%
• Home renovations: 19%
• Starting a business: 15%
• Growing my family (getting married, having a baby, etc.): 10%
• Retiring: 6%
• Other: 2%
Over half of respondents did not make any major investment changes.
Market volatility still isn’t scaring investors away. Over half, or 55% of respondents held on to their assets during this year’s economic crisis.
When we asked investors how they reacted to market swings this year:
• 29% said they bought a lot of investment
• 17% said they sold a lot of investments
• 55% said they did not buy or sell investments
The investors that did sell some of their assets (45%) ultimately relinquished less than half of their portfolio. Only 7% sold 76% or more of their total investments.
Many investors have investment regrets about 2022 and are looking toward 2023.
With 2023 on the horizon, many investors are planning to adjust their strategies based on the lessons they learned this year.
People are split on how inflation makes them feel about their investment strategies in 2022:
Inflation can be a thorn in the side of investors. Our respondents were split in how they approached inflation in 2022:
• 39% of respondents said they want to invest more, despite inflation.
• 33% said inflation makes them want to leave their investments alone.
• 28% said inflation makes them want to invest less.
Of the 39% who want to invest more, Gen Z appears to be the most optimistic (27% of that subgroup are between the ages of 18 and 24).
One thing is for certain — confident investors will continue to engage with the market despite inflation.
In general, people have mixed emotions about their investments in 2022, but the most common feeling was optimism (26%).
There was also some variance in how respondents feel about their investments. Most were optimistic, and fewer felt stressed, disappointed, and content.
• Optimistic: 26%
• Stressed: 19%
• Disappointed: 19%
• Content: 15%
• Excited: 14%
• Regretful: 5%
• Angry: 3%
Very few felt regretful or angry, which could be welcome signs of more market participation in the coming year.
While 5% of respondents feel regretful, a full 25% — or one in four investors — have zero regrets about 2022.
That said, 75% of respondents have some type of investment regret this year. And many have learned major lessons this year. Mainly, many wish they had bought more assets at lower prices.
Some of the most common investing regrets respondents expressed:
• They should’ve bought more crypto when prices were at their lowest (18%)
• They should’ve bought more stock when the market started to decline (16%)
• They should’ve sold stock before the market started to decline (15%)
Not everyone was regretful about their investing activities: As noted, 25% of respondents have no regrets at all. And of those that have no regrets, 60% are 45 or older.
Here’s the breakdown of the investment regrets respondents had this year:
• I have no regrets: 25%
• I should have bought more crypto while prices were their lowest: 18%
• I should have bought more stock when the market started tanking: 16%
• I should have sold stock before the market started tanking: 15%
• I should have sold my crypto early in the year: 10%
• I should have bought gold: 9%
• I should have held onto stock when the market started tanking: 7%
People use a variety of tactics to cope with the stress of market fluctuations:
We got a lot of interesting responses about how investors have dealt with the stress that came from market fluctuation.
• 41% took their mind off their portfolios by engaging in hobbies.
• 37% did their own investment research.
• 31% of them simply stopped checking their balances.
• 22% of respondents talked with their brokers for reassurance. 17% participated in online forums.
And on a positive note, 14% said the markets simply didn’t stress them out.
Nearly a third of respondents (30%) check their investment portfolios every day. And 75% check at least once a week.
Although one coping mechanism of market stress was to avoid checking balances, 30% of our respondents (65% of whom were male) check their investments every day.
Most respondents check their portfolio’s performance at least once a week. Here’s how often investors are checking their investment performance.
• Every day: 30%
• 2 to 3 times a week: 29%
• Once a week: 17%
• A few times a month: 12%
• Once a month: 7%
• Less than once a month: 7%
Looking forward to 2023
2022 is almost over and many investors are already looking forward to next year. Let’s see how our respondents plan to adjust their strategies in 2023.
85% of respondents plan to make some changes to how they invest in 2023.
While most respondents have agreed to change their plans, 21% of them want to invest more into the market.
Here are other ways people plan to change their investment strategies next year:
• 19% plan to do more of their own investment research
• 14% plan to work with a financial advisor
• 10% plan to buy into a new type of investment
• 9% plan to change the asset allocations in their portfolio
• 6% plan to decrease how much they invest overall
• 5% plan to use a robo-advisor or automated investing
• 15% don’t plan to change anything.
If this year has taught investors anything, it’s to adapt their strategies and stay optimistic. When asked how they planned to change their strategies, here is how investors responded.
Historically, market volatility tends to even itself out, and investment values typically rebound. Investors’ attitudes and behaviors tend to mirror this pattern. While markets have been low in 2022, there are signs of recovery as the year draws to a close, and people appear to be optimistic about an upswing and plan to continue investing.
If you’re ready to take advantage of buying when the market is low, online investing with SoFi Invest is an easy way to get started.
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