Retirement Investor Risk Tolerance in Tranquil and Crisis Periods: Experimental Survey Evidence

Institute of Behavioral Finance
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Behavioral Finance, 2011, 12 (4), pp. 201 - 218
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The impact of the global financial crisis of 2008 and 2009 on private pension assets has been severe. Asset prices crashed on a scale not seen since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The OECD estimates that global assets accumulated to finance retirement fell by 20-25% over 2008. Ireland felt the greatest impact, where pension assets fell by around 35%, but the United States was close behind with an estimated decline of 25-30%, followed by falls of around 20% in Canada and Australia (Antolin & Stewart 2009). Individual pension accumulations felt the brunt of the impact: in the United States, the average defined contribution plan balance fell by 16%, from $31,800 in 2007 to $26,578 by mid 2009 (Copeland 2009).
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