A Blog by Jonathan Low


Mar 3, 2015

Wall Street Has Its Eye on Millennials' $30 Trillion Inheritance

$30 trillion. That's a lot of kale. Or new iPhones. It's even a whole bunch of Priuses.

And hey, ya know, congrats and good luck and all that. But there are a whole lotta people who would love to help you figure out what to do with all of it.

Not that they think you are incapable of doing that yourselves, but as y our Boomer parents were once fond of noting, ' you get by with a little help from your friends.' And we can negotiate the fee... JL

Michael Regan reports in Bloomberg:

It seems the millennials are going to inherit a lot more from their Baby Boomer parents than just some tie-dyes, Steely Dan LPs and Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers comic books.
There have been any number of pieces written about how Millennials are consciously refusing to do things that preceding generations thought were perfectly reasonable, such as playing golf or investing in the stock market or even doing a SINGLE NICE THING  for someone else!
This seems to have caused some consternation on Wall Street, where the powers-that-be would obviously like to see millennials do at least one nice thing for them: hand over all their money.
But have no fear, because Wall Street is ON IT! Financial firms are working hard to solve the Rubik's Cube (err, sorry the 2048) that is the Gen Y zeitgeist, if recent reports from Federated Investors Inc. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.  are any indication. Based on the research, here are the highlights of what you need to know about this enigmatic generation: They like skinny ties and skinny jeans and, based on the way these firms are presenting these findings, they seem to only be reachable through cartoon-like graphics and animation.
As the millennials say: Don't believe us? Just watch! Here is the front of a recent Federated Investors Inc. cartoon, err, report:

Not to be outdone, Goldman Sachs is also chasing after this huge millennial craze. According to recent Goldman animation, millennials seem to enjoy throwing their electronics-adorned hands in the air and waving them in a manner that implies they simply do not care:

But that belies an important issue with these millennials. They do care! It's just that they care about a bunch of stuff that the older folks haven't cared about since the days of lava lamps.  According to Goldman's cartoon, they have weird new-agey priorities like "wellness" and have "shown different attitudes to ownership that have helped spawn what’s being called a `sharing economy.'"
Sounds like a bunch of hippies at best, and commies at worst. Can't Wall Street just blow off this hopeless generation and focus on the older folks who have all the money (and not all those pesky post-grad degrees)? After all, millennials have less disposable cash and way more college debt, according to Goldman's animation (and probably according to that 30-year-0ld "screenwriter" living in your basement.)
Well, therein lies the catch. It seems the millennials are going to inherit a lot more from their Baby Boomer parents than just some tie-dyes, Steely Dan LPs and Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers comic books.  To the tune of $30 trillion, according to Federated. Most of it apparently will come from friendly older cartoon couples who look like slimmer versions of Santa and Mrs. Claus and have $30 trillion stuffed in pink piggy banks:

That is some serious dough! And here we thought the Boomers blew all their money on reefers and Rogaine. So it's no surprise firms seem to have their Flash animators working non-stop to chase this big payday once the Boomers start croaking in earnest.
But there's another catch! These weirdo millennials are too smart for their own good, with all that education and whatnot, and they're getting all their financial advice from their weirdo friends and their weirdo selves and even weirdo online market commentators on weirdo social networks. They're not even listening to the "experts" like brokers and bankers. See, here's Federated:

The scary part is, they could be so hopped up on this "sharing economy" that they may not roll all of that dough into perfectly sensible investments like stocks, triple-leveraged inverse ETFs or synthetic CDO squareds. Instead, they could very well just "share" it. If that's the case, they're bound to start hearing from a bunch who are even worse than Wall Street: Gen Xers.


Post a Comment