Survey Says: Investors Are Getting Scared

“As world unrest surges and the stock market wobbles, investors have gotten nervous.”

At least three separate sentiment polls indicate stock investors are worried about the trouble in Ukraine, the Middle East violence, continuing projections for a long-overdue correction or worse in the financial markets, and frustration with Washington politics.

For example, respondents to the weekly American Association of Individual Investors survey indicated their strongest levels of pessimism in almost a year.  A survey by Investors Intelligence (which polls investor newsletter editors) indicates a drop in investor bullishness compared to the previous survey.  And, a Bank of America/Merrill Lynch survey of investment strategists indicated heavy bearishness on Wall Street.

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Teaching Suggestions

You may want to use the information in this blog post and the original article to

  • Reinforce the relationship between world affairs, the economy, and the financial markets.

Discussion Questions

  1. At the time of this post, the world situation is troublesome to say the least. What is the relationship between world events, the economy, and the financial markets?
  2. These three recent sentiment surveys indicate that there are more bears than bulls? How would you define a bear?  A bull?
  3. Even though the sentiment surveys indicate investors are pessimistic about the market, some analysts view the market’s bearishness as a buying opportunity. Why could pessimism in the financial markets signal a time for investors to purchase stocks or mutual funds that invest in stocks?

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