Global Atlantic Study Highlights Shifting Financial Priorities and the Need for Planning Amid Pandemic

New research from Global Atlantic Financial Group found that more than eight out of ten Americans (83%) say making sure their loved ones are financially protected is important to them right now, yet two in five (43%) have no life insurance and only one third (33%) believe they have enough life insurance or other assets to protect their family in the event of their own death.

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The “Perceptions of Life Insurance During a Pandemic” study was conducted in August by Artemis Strategy Group on behalf of Global Atlantic, among 1,065 American adults to examine their views on life insurance, estate planning and shifting financial priorities.

Aside from contracting Covid-19 personally or having a family member or close friend contract the virus, the top concern among those surveyed was to ensure their family’s financial wellbeing.

A full two thirds (67%) of Americans say the Covid-19 pandemic has made them think about their own mortality, while seven in ten (69%) have reassessed at least one financial aspect of their life during the pandemic. These areas include their emergency savings situation (54% have reassessed), long-term savings and investments (49%), employment situation (39%), and life insurance (28%).

When asked how many years of income they would replace with life insurance in the event of an early death, nearly six out of ten (57%) said at least two years. More than half of those with $150K or more in household income would replace five or more years of income (54%).

Only one third of Americans had a will in place before the pandemic, but nearly three out of ten either made changes to it during the pandemic,

By Guy Faulconbridge, Kate Holton and Paul Sandle

LONDON (Reuters) – Allianz

CEO Oliver Baete said on Tuesday that European governments needed to be careful about spending record amounts on the COVID-19 crisis as many ordinary people would be angry when they were handed such a vast bill.

The coronavirus pandemic has prompted a debt-fuelled spending splurge by governments across the world as lockdowns batter economies, shred millions of jobs and push whole sectors towards collapse.

The boss of Allianz, which has 2.3 trillion euros under management, said that there were a lot of “zombie” companies being kept afloat with government money though many private households were more resilient than some thought.

Many ordinary people, Baete said, were clearly smarter than the political classes who were spending record amounts of money – an issue that he said could one day hurt social cohesion.

“Our people are apparently much smarter than the political class and I say that with all due respect because … ‘somebody will have to pay the bill’,” Baete told The Wall Street Journal CEO Council.

“How does a society work where one part of the society keeps on spending beyond their own means and others are supposed to pay for that? Polarisation is a very important issue,” he said.

“So we need to be very careful. I don’t believe that this issue is just an economic question: it is actually a question of social cohesion.”

Baete said many financial markets looked irrational at the moment, partly due to excess liquidity and market structure. Allianz, he said, was keeping away from risk in its equity portfolios.

Santander

chairwoman Ana Botín said that there were tough times ahead as the world entered in the second wave of the novel coronavirus crisis – and that there could even be a