Since 2004, PNC Wealth Management has conducted a signature survey on the opinions and attitudes of America's wealthy. It has become a barometer not just of how the affluent spend their money but why and how they think. Below are the results of our current and past Wealth and Values Surveys.
According to PNC's latest survey of American millionaires:
Two-thirds (64 percent) of millionaires are concerned about economic inequality in America and most prefer to financially support charitable causes over political parties or candidates. Seven in 10 (69 percent) support charitable initiatives focused on poverty and hunger in America and nearly two-thirds (64 percent) support scholarship and other educational opportunities for children of lower income families.
Most American millionaires cite smart saving over investment choices as the key ingredient to their financial success and very few have benefited from inheritance or a rich spouse. Saving early and regularly is named most often (56 percent) as the personal decision that most influenced their financial success, according to the survey by PNC Wealth Management.
The increasingly optimistic mood of America's affluent on the economy darkened in the aftermath of the U.S. government shutdown and near default, according to survey findings by PNC Wealth Management. Nearly half (48 percent) of those surveyed in the immediate aftermath of the near U.S. default in mid-October said they were less optimistic about the U.S. economy than they were before the highly contentious stalemate. Three quarters (76 percent) said that governing by crisis must change because "the government simply cannot continue to operate this way." Only four percent responded that "things are going to get better."
More than four in five of American millionaires agree that each generation should be responsible for creating its own wealth, up significantly from the 65 percent who said the same thing in 2007, according to the new Wealth and Values Survey from PNC Wealth Management. One third of millionaires anticipate a decline in the wealth they expect to pass on to the next generation, a number that has more than doubled since this topic was addressed in a previous Wealth and Values survey in 2007. More than eight in 10 say raising successful, hard-working children is their most important goal, an increase from 75 percent from five years ago.