Croatian citizens prioritize safety over financial market gains

On the occasion of the World Investor Week (October 2-8), the Croatian Financial Services Supervisory Agency (Hanfa) conducted an online survey on its educational portal "Novac za sutra" and social media platforms regarding citizens' investments in the financial market and their risk perception.  The results of a random sample showed that a smaller portion of respondents is willing to take high risks for quick profits, focusing solely on quick gains without considering potential losses. 

Nearly 50 percent of the survey participants have invested in the financial market, with 40.9 percent having significant experience and 9.4 percent having some experience with such investments. The remaining half has not invested in the financial market. Accordingly, 42.5 percent of respondents objectively assessed their knowledge of financial markets as poor, while 48.8 percent, probably those more experienced, considered themselves as having good knowledge, and 8.7 percent as being excellent experts in the financial market.

It is interesting to see that inflation has prompted Croatian citizens to start thinking about protecting the value of their assets, considering the possibility of investing in the financial market.  Consequently, 32.7 percent responded that they would try to protect themselves from inflation by investing in the financial market. Additionally, 34.1 percent of those who had not previously invested began contemplating it with the goal of mitigating inflation. Only 34.1 percent of respondents said that they would not invest in the financial market, regardless of inflation. The majority expressed an interest in investing in stocks and investment funds (61.4 percent), 23.6 percent considered bonds, and only 15 percent would choose cryptoassets. 

When it comes to financial investments, the majority (44.4 percent) consider it most important to be offered some guarantee of minimal security, 28.6 percent would rely on a good financial advisor, while 27 percent think about making a good profit in the short term.  Half of the respondents (49.6 percent) would pay equal attention to potential earnings and potential losses, while the rest are divided between those who would primarily focus on gains (26 percent) and those who are more concerned about losses and less interested in profits (24.4 percent).

When hearing the word "risk", 37.3 percent of respondents feel uncomfortable, 24.6 percent are not sure, and 38.1 percent are quite comfortable with it.  When asked if they considered investing in high-risk assets solely for the purpose of achieving high short-term profits, the majority (56.8 percent) responded negatively, 24.8 percent were unsure, and a smaller portion (18.4 percent) answered affirmatively. This aligns with their responses regarding whether they would prefer an investment with lower but secure returns over one with higher but less secure returns. Only 15.6 percent of respondents said that they would prefer high and less secure returns, while 52.3 percent favoured security. Approximately one-third (32 percent) couldn't decide.

To mark the World Investor Week, in addition to the conducted survey, Hanfa is carrying out additional educational activities throughout October and participating in the co-organisation of public events and conferences.

On 4 October, in collaboration with the Croatian Chamber of Economy, a roundtable discussion titled "New Possibilities for Financing the Economy – Opportunities and Challenges" will be organised, and on 12 October, a student conference on cryptocurrency investments and cryptocurrency market regulation will be held at the Faculty of Economics in Zagreb, featuring multiple lectures and panel discussions. As part of training the trainers, an online lecture for professors will be held on 3 October, and a regular monthly online lecture on the topic of investment and risk preference, open to all interested parties and the general public, will take place on 18 October.

One of Hanfa's responsibilities as a market regulator is to educate the public and protect consumers, and it invests continuous efforts throughout the year to achieve this goal. In addition to regular lectures, training sessions, and panel discussions in which its representatives regularly participate, Hanfa publishes numerous educational materials on its website and on a dedicated portal www.novaczasutra.hr, as well as on corresponding social media platforms. On all these channels, various educational topics related to finance can be found, explained in a simple manner, and this is one of the ways in which Hanfa contributes to the financial education of citizens throughout the year.


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