A survey by
& Finimize

Forget what you thought you knew about modern-day investors. This group may be self-taught, but they are overwhelmingly social. And although they admit that financial literacy is an ongoing challenge, they’re getting scrappy when it comes to the ways they build their knowledge and apply it to their portfolios.

Read the full survey below

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Most people talk to their friends about investing—and younger investors are significantly chattier.

Most investors, 56%, say they use their friends as soundboards when investing.

This trend was more significant among younger investors: 64% of 18- to 29-year-olds discuss investments with friends vs. 38% of investors 66+.

Men are more likely than women to discuss investments with friends (58% of men vs. 51% of women).

Community is the
new brain trust

Investors are 3X more likely to go to their friends or online communities for feedback than they are their own families.

Three-fourths of the investors we surveyed say they seek outside input regarding their investments. Friends are usually the first stop.

Among people who talk about their investments with others, 37% go to their friends first, followed by communities and forums (26%), family (21%), and professional coaches or advisors (15%).

Too late,
too little

Nearly a quarter of people said they celebrated their 30th birthday before learning the basics of investing.

Most people (62%) said they didn't learn about investing until after college.

Women were more likely to say they learned after college: 67% of women said they learned after the age of 21 vs. just 59% of men who said the same.

My mentor,

Absent formal financial literacy programs, 55% of investors adopted a DIY approach to learning about investing.

The next most popular place to learn: middle or high school class or college course (18%). Seven percent of respondents say they learned from their peers.

Respondents were 3X more likely to say they learned about investing from their father (6%) than from their mother (2%).

Low literacy,
high wall

The biggest barriers to building financial literacy: not being able to afford a professional and uncertainty about where to go for information.

Twenty-eight percent of respondents said not being able to hire a professional holds them back. A similar number, 27%, said they weren’t sure which resources to tap into when improving their literacy.

Beyond that, 17% said they don’t have the time to educate themselves and 14% said they feel like the concepts are too complex. The smallest group, 13%, said they’re not comfortable talking about their finances with an outside party.

The strategies
are shifting

Younger investors weigh business trends and company values more than older cohorts do when making decisions.

Financial performance is the most common input for making investment decisions across every age cohort: 82% consider this before investing. The second most-cited factor: having a strong product.

Young people are more likely to invest in trends they believe in (53% of 18- to 29-year-olds versus 39% of 66+). They are also more likely to cite company values as a factor (30% 18- to 29-year-olds versus 22% of 66+).


More respondents said they invest in cryptocurrency than real estate.

The "house with the picket fence" used to be a primary indicator that a person had achieved the American Dream, but this ideal seems to be changing.

In our survey, 25% of respondents said they invest in cryptocurrency, while just 21% of them said they invest in real estate.

We've given you a snapshot of the most interesting insights from the survey, but there's plenty more to explore in the data.

Click to reveal