Norwegians saving in funds hits new high
Both the number of Norwegian retail investors using funds for savings purposes, as well as the average amount saved per person per month have grown in 2018, according to survey data from the Norwegian Fund and Asset Management Association.
With some 1.5 million individuals, or about 36% of the population, putting money into equity funds, the proportion has not been higher since 2011, the Association notes. It suggests that both the IPS (individual pension savings regime) and the ASK account regime (for buying and selling direct equities or equity funds tax free) have contributed to the growth.
The data suggest that the largest share, some 31%, are saving between NOK1,000-2,000 (€102-205) per month, but that those saving more than NOK5,000 (€514) per month has increased by 5% compared to 2017.
There is still a gender gap when it comes to saving via funds. While some 41% of men state that they invest in equity funds, for women the share is just 31%.
By age bracket, the fastest growth was seen in the 18-20 age group, where the proportion of respondents who said they use equity funds increased to 26% from 20% in 2017.
However, despite the growth in average amounts saved via funds, and the increase in more younger people using funds, it still remains the case that the bulk of individual wealth, on average, rests in residential property and deposit bank accounts.
As for factors that influence the choice of funds when such investments are made, the research suggests that risk levels of individual funds matter more than costs or historical returns.