Despite the volatility of recent months, publicly traded stocks still top the list of preferred investments for high-net-worth investors, according to a survey of more than 180 members of the TIGER 21 group.

TIGER 21 (The Investment Group for Enhanced Results in the 21st Century) is a peer network for high-net-worth investors.

About 31% of high net worth respondents said public stocks were their favorite investment, according to the survey. Stocks were followed by hedge funds (22%) real estate (12%) fixed income and private equity (11% each) commodities (7%) cash (4%) and currencies (1%).

The survey asked the TIGER 21 members, who collectively control more than $15 billion in assets, to name their favorite investments as well as their portfolio allocations for those investments.

 The survey responses overall depict the high-net-worth investors as fairly conservative. “In general, TIGER 21 members are interested in preserving the wealth they’ve built up over many years of hard work rather than taking unwarranted risks in a very volatile environment,” said Michael Sonnenfeldt, founder and chairman of TIGER 21.

For those who listed fixed income as a favorite investment, Pimco Investments was the favored manager of those investments. Fixed income, along with cash and cash equivalents, together accounted for 26% of respondents’ collective asset allocation. “The stability afforded by fixed income is in line with members’ appetite for safer investments and generally reliable returns,” Sonnenfeldt said.

 Although nearly one third of respondents said public stocks were their favorite investment category, only 19% of total assets were allocated to stocks. Similarly, while hedge funds were named a favorite investment by 22% of respondents, only about 12% of total assets were allocated to hedge funds, according to the survey.

The top four most popular stocks among the members surveyed are Apple (AAPL), Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A), General Electric (GE) and Microsoft (MFST).

The most popular hedge fund strategy among members who listed hedge funds as a favorite investment was an equity long/short strategy (29%) followed by event-driven (24%). Hedge fund managers named in the top 10 favorites included Elliott Management Corporation, Alpine Associates, Millennium Management, Ramius Advisors and Hayman Advisors.

About 25% of respondents’ assets were in real estate, making this the largest single category by allocation. Many members of TIGER 21 have backgrounds in real estate, and “feel comfortable investing in something they know,” Sonnenfeldt said. “Over the long term, real estate, when well bought, has represented a very good opportunity to build and preserve wealth,” he said.

Headquartered in New York, TIGER 21 also has active U.S. groups in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Miami, Washington D.C. and Dallas.



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