Ah, the millennials.
They’re a fascinating bunch.
They’ve been labelled entitled, moody, and even lazy. Criticisms they themselves will and have refused to accept.
Instead, they’d probably label themselves as open-minded, authentic, and tech-savvy. A generation that has pioneered the social media age.
Though generation Z are likely to be the ones who perfect it. But I digress…
My point is, everyone has an opinion when it comes to millennials. Good, bad, or indifferent — everyone is ‘talkin’ ‘bout my generation’.
As a millennial myself I know that all too well. And I’ll be honest, I don’t really care what people think or say.
I’m sure there are plenty of lazy and entitled people my age. Just as there are plenty of open-minded and authentic ones.
Same goes for those older and younger than me. Every generation has its fair share of positives and negatives.
What I do care about though, is how the millennials act. Because what they do has far more sway than how they are perceived.
And this is particularly important when it comes to the financial world.
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Take from the rich
As a generation, many millennials came into adulthood at an awkward time.
The Global Financial Crisis was the defining event of their transition into the ‘real world’. One that gave them plenty of reasons to be sceptical and averse to the financial system.
Keep in mind, I’m not saying they copped the worst of this crisis either. Older generations, especially those who were retired or close to it bore the brunt of the cost.
Mentally though, it changed how everyone viewed the financial system.
And for this young, impressionable cohort it was a catalyst for distrust. One of the main reasons why so few millennials are investors.
That is, until recently…
Lately I’ve started to notice more interest from people my age in the stock market. Both anecdotally and categorically.
In fact, it’s a subject that my fellow editor, Sam Volkering, touched on earlier this week.
He discussed the recent ‘Robinhood rebound’. A phenomenon that revolves around the popular investing app Robinhood.
To make a long story short, this app has become a favourite of millennials. It has given them a tool to invest through technology they are familiar with. Oh, and the ‘fee-free’ incentive certainly helps too.
The duo behind the app, Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Bhatt, know how to market it too. Tapping into millennial angst by promoting Robinhood as a way to ‘level the financial playing field’. Rekindling and using the mistrust to offer an alternative.
It’s genius really, and it worked.
But what has been truly surprising is just how kind 2020 has been to Robinhood. As Rob Walker summarised in a recent article:
‘A global pandemic has thrown the world’s economy into a terrifying tailspin.
‘The stock market’s gyrations, which often seem wholly disconnected from…