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Survey Says... Investor Focus Shifting From Real Estate to Equities Through 2005

Survey Says... Investor Focus Shifting From Real Estate to Equities Through 2005

JERSEY CITY, N.J., May 26, 2004 – From 2000 to 2003, there was no place like home for investors, according to a recent survey by Harrisdirect. Low interest rates, a three-year equity market slide, and a robust housing market made real estate an attractive option for individuals seeking an alternative to reeling financial markets. Investors also sought refuge in cash and cash equivalents (CDs, MMA). But stocks are expected to be the investment of choice for the next two years.

The survey found 47 percent of respondents intend to allocate the majority of annual savings to equities through 2005, versus 33 percent from 2000-2003 - an increase of 14 percent. Conversely, investment in residential real estate and home improvement is expected to drop 7 percent.

Where Investor Savings Is Going
(base 1,008)
Past 3
Next 2
Stocks 33% 47% 14%
Home (upgraded home or made improvements) 32% 25% -7%
Cash or equialent (CDs, MMA) 19% 15% -4%
Bonds 6% 5% -1%
Other 10% 9% -1%

Annual Investment Increase: 2003 vs. 2002

Fueling this shift, the survey also found almost half of respondents increased total investment in 2003 by an average of nearly 14 percent versus 2002.

Overall Change In Yearly Investment: 2003 vs. 2002
(base 1,008)

Average increase of yearly investment
(among those who increased) : 13.6%
Increased 45%
Decreased 17%
Stayed the same 35%
Not sure 3%

Harrisdirect commissioned Harris Interactive (no affiliation) to conduct the Harrisdirect Investor Survey in order to examine investor behavior during the bull market of the late 1990s, through the downturn beginning in 2000 and now as markets have recovered over the past 12 months.

The survey was conducted among U.S. adults, 31-65 from Harris Interactive’s online panel who were screened to identify investors who have invest able assets of at least $100,000 including assets held in retirement accounts, not to be day traders, half of whom invest online and half who do not. A random sample of 1008 from that screened population completed the survey. Though this sample is not a probability sample, in theory, with probability samples of this size, one could say with 95 percent certainty that the results have a statistical precision of plus or minus three percentage points of what they would be if the entire adult population had been polled with complete accuracy.

About Harrisdirect:
Harrisdirect is a part of The Harris wealth management group and is a leading provider of direct investing services to informed investors with long-term financial goals. For more than a century, the Harris organization has built its reputation on trust, experience and the highest level of personal service. Today The Harris delivers a full suite of brokerage, private banking, trust and investment and wealth advisory services through professionals dedicated to assisting individuals and families in managing their financial futures. The Harris represents the U.S. wealth management businesses of BMO Financial Group (NYSE, TSX: BMO). For more information, please visit or

Amy Yuhn, Harrisdirect, (312) 461-2478

Harris is a trademark used by various financial service providers in the BMO Financial Group, a marketing name used by Bank of Montreal. Banking products and services are provided by Harris N.A. and The Harris Bank N.A. Members FDIC. Insurance and annuities are offered through Harris Bancorp Insurance Services, Inc (HBIS). Sec urities are provided by Harris Nesbitt Corp (HNC), a registered broker dealer, member NYSE, NASD and SIPC and Harrisdirect LLC, a registered broker dealer, member NASD and SIPC. HBIS, HNC and Harrisdirect are wholly owned subsidiaries of Harris Financial Corp. Products offered by HBIS, HNC and Harrisdirect are Not Insured by the FDIC or any Federal Government Agency, Not a Deposit of or Guaranteed by Any Bank or Bank Affiliate, May Lose Value. The purchase of insurance or an annuity is not a condition on any bank loan or service. Financial planning and investment advisory services are provided by Sullivan, Bruyette, Speros & Blayney, Inc., an SEC registered investment advisor. Family office services are provided by Harris myCFO, Inc. Investment advisory services are also offered by Harris myCFO Investment Advisory Services LLC, an SEC registered investment advisor and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Harris myCFO, Inc. Not all products and services are offered in every state and/or location.