The Millennial generation was hit hard by the 2008-2009 financial crisis and is still struggling today. According to a new survey from Bankrate.com, young Americans between the ages of 18 and 29 are three times more likely to keep their long-term investments in cash instead of the stock market. Experts say this strong aversion to the stock market by Millennials is directly related to the financial crisis and the ensuing long-term recession we are just now really emerging from.

Millennials

Details on Millennials’ investment habits

The new survey from Bankrate.com highlights that more than 39% of Millennials said that cash was the preferred way to invest any money that they don’t need for at least 10 years. This figure was hands down the highest percentage of any age group. Around 24% of Millennials in the survey selected real estate as the preferred long-term investment, and only 13% indicated that the stock market was their preferred investment choice.

It should be noted that this statistic is not all that startling as young people do generally keep their limited extra funds as a cash “nest egg” rather than investment funds.

Statement from Bankrate on new survey

Bankrate chief financial analyst Greg McBride points out that Millennials aversion to stock market could become a major problem a few years down the road. “The preference for cash and aversion to the stock market among young adults is very troubling considering this age group has the biggest retirement savings burden,” McBride said. “They won’t get there without being willing to assume a little short-term price risk in their long-term money.”

Americans overall are still risk-averse

The Bankrate.com survey also highlights that Americans as a group are still relatively risk averse. More than 25% of Americans  across all age groups said they prefer cash investments, 23% said they believed in investing in real estate and a mere 19% said they were planning in investing in the stock market.

McBride also commented that that the overall results show that “Americans are still risk-averse when it comes to how they invest their money.”