Seventy percent of affluent Americans feel that preserving wealth is their most important goal, according to a survey released by the Lincoln Financial Group of Philadelphia.
Right behind preserving wealth was avoiding excessive taxes, listed by 59% of the affluent group as a “very important” goal. In fact, avoiding excessive taxes was ranked higher than accumulating additional wealth. Yet, surprisingly, less than a third of the affluent said that they feel that they have adequately protected their assets from excessive taxes, according to the survey.
When asked to assess the degree to which their assets were protected from taxes, 52% said their assets were only “moderately” protected, and 20% believe their assets were protected “very little.”
Passing their wealth onto their children was cited as very important by 38%. Twenty-four percent listed preserving their company as a very important goal.
When it comes to lowering tax bills, about six in 10 affluent people said 40l(k)s and IRA plans were very important tools for reducing taxes, followed by 50% who cited creating a trust and 22% who listed making annual gifts to charities, according to the LFG study.
The survey was conducted among 400 Americans with investable assets of more than $250,000. In determining the asset threshold, the survey excluded company retirement plans, 401(k)s, 403(b)s and the respondents’ primary residence, but included IRA accounts. Part of the study compared the attitudes of Americans with three levels of investable assets: $250,000 to $500,000; $500,000 to $1 million; and more than $1 million. Editor's note: For any comments regarding this article, or to suggest a story idea for RR Online or Registered Representative magazine, contact Editor in Chief Dan Jamieson at [email protected], Online Editor Rick Weinberg at [email protected], Online Managing Editor Cheryl Cooper at [email protected] or Senior Editor Michael Hayes at [email protected]