The stock-market impact of millennial investors has been overblown as trading volumes decline — and it’s actually the older crowd who’s exerted more influence, JPMorgan says

By Ben Winck

  • Older retail investors were “partly responsible” for the market’s price swings through October and November, while younger traders played “a rather modest role,” JPMorgan strategists said Tuesday.
  • While the younger group tends to invest in individual stocks and options, the older cohort more often uses funds to invest.
  • Older investors have been selling equity funds and buying bond funds through most of 2020, acting as a drag on the stock market, the bank said.
  • Retail investors’ trading volumes fell from roughly 23% of all market volume in June to just 16% in September. The decline “raises questions about the narrative” that retail investors were behind the market’s summer rally, JPMorgan said.
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Millennial investors made headlines over the summer, but older investors were a bigger part of driving the market’s recent swings, JPMorgan strategists said Tuesday.

A surge in retail-investor trading activity coincided with stocks’ climb to record highs in September, leading Wall Street to wonder whether individual traders were a new market driver. First-time millennial and Generation Z investors garnered attention for risky day-trading habits and interest in highly volatile stocks.

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