Younger people investing in Stocks & Shares ISAs

The number of people in their 20s and early 30s choosing to invest in the stock market is “skyrocketing”, according to new analysis by Scottish Friendly.

The mutual life and investments group looked at the latest HMRC annual ISA data which showed that under-25s are now the fastest growing demographic in terms of Stocks & Shares ISA subscriptions, followed by those aged between 25 and 34. Subscriptions across both age brackets jumped 92.3% from 131,000 to 252,000 between the 2016/17 and 2017/18 tax years.

In the 2016/17 tax year, Scottish Friendly stated that just 22,000 under-25s subscribed solely to a Stocks & Shares ISA, compared to 66,000 the following year – a rise of 200%. This figure further increased when also considering the number of under-25s with both a Stocks & Shares ISA and a Cash ISA, which saw a rise of 138% from 13,000 to 31,000 over the same period.

The number of people aged between 25 and 34 subscribing to a Stocks & Shares ISA leapt 71% from 109,000 to 186,000 between the 2016/17 and 2017/18 tax years.

By comparison, Scottish Friendly’s analysis found that the number of people aged between 35 and 44, as well as those aged 65 and over, who subscribed to a Stocks & Shares ISA increased by just 4% and 5% respectively over the same period.

The analysis also indicated that the figures for people aged between 45 and 54 and for those between 55 and 64 who have subscribed to a Stocks & Shares ISA had actually fallen over the course of the year.

Scottish Friendly savings specialist, Kevin Brown, commented: “It is very encouraging to see so many young people engaging with money and investing, many of whom are probably dabbling with the stock market for the first time.

“What these figures show is that investing is not just for older people with higher incomes and more savings; it can be for anyone and everyone who wants to grow their money over the long-term.

“The introduction of the Lifetime ISA, which gives subscribers a 25% government top-up on their savings, is at least partly responsible for the uplift in the number of under-35’s trying their hand at investing.

“But also, the rise in the number of options for beginner investors, or for younger people who want to invest but are keen to keep their costs down, has clearly helped. Those two reasons combined mean it is now arguably easier and cheaper than ever for young people to invest for their futures.”

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