Investor confidence dropped slightly in the third quarter of 2012, according to the John Hancock Investor Sentiment Index, released Wednesday by John Hancock Financial Services.
Down two points to 17 from 19 in the second quarter, this marks the second consecutive two point decline in investor confidence. Yet it still remains above 15, where it was in the final quarter of 2011.
While investor sentiment regarding stocks and bonds did not change greatly from the second quarter, there were larger shifts in investors' feelings toward types of investments compared to a year ago. According to the survey, investors are more bullish on stocks this quarter with 49% of investors saying they thought it was a good time to invest in stocks compared to 41% in the last quarter of 2011.
At the same time, investors are less confident about stock market growth. In the second quarter of 2012, 74% of investors surveyed said they thought the Dow would close above 13,000 in June 2013. This quarter only 67% of investors thought so.
For most investors, 62%, the biggest issue facing the U.S. is still the level of national debt. Meanwhile, the top financial priority for 34% of investors was saving for retirement, according to the index.