Confidence in US capital markets at record high

Confidence in US capital markets at record high

Confidence in US capital markets at record high Investors south of the border have increased their confidence in US capital markets despite concerns about White House and Congress policy.

The Annual Main Street Investor Survey from the Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) reveals that 85% of investors are confident in the capital markets and 83% have confidence investing in US publicly traded companies, another record high.

"Main Street investor confidence soared to a new high in our survey this year," said Cindy Fornelli, CAQ executive director. "Investors place strong trust in America's market system, while also having high expectations and closely watching policy debates in Washington. The administration and Congress should heed our survey's list of investor concerns, which is topped by the growing national debt and the threat of cyber-attacks on the financial markets."

American investors have also become more confident in markets outside the US, rising from 42% in 2016 to 54% this year. The share of respondents who have little or no confidence in markets outside the US fell to 27% from 44% a year ago.

When asked about the audited financial information available on publicly listed companies, 78% said they are confident in it and investors were overwhelmingly confident in the ability of external auditors.

Among those with confidence in the US capital markets, just 14% were confident or trust in the Trump administration and US government. 

Actions taken by the White House (45%) or by Congress (44%) matter a lot to the decisions taken by investors but changes to US tax policy (43%) and cyber attacks targeting financial information or capital markets (42%) are also key factors.

Asked what factors matter a lot in their decision to invest in companies, most (57%) said the firm’s products or services, followed by long-term strategy (56%), actions by the CEO (47%) and human rights and fair labour practices (39%).

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