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New Record During Pandemic: Stock Trading Volume $59 Trillion US Higher than in the Previous Year, Germans Particularly Fond of ETFs

A staggering $185 trillion worth of equities were traded worldwide in the Corona crisis year of 2020. Compared to the previous year, this corresponds to an increase of $59 trillion or almost 47%, as shown in a new infographic from Wette.de. Meanwhile, the study also paints a more accurate picture of Germans’ investment preferences. 

Until 2020, the year 2015 held the record in terms of stock trading turnover, with total trades amounting to $148 trillion. High volatility in the face of the pandemic has not only prompted existing shareholders to restructure their portfolios, it has also attracted new investors.

As the infographic shows, ETFs are particularly popular among Germans. While 1.6 million Germans invested exclusively in funds/ETFs in 2019, 2.3 million did so in the following year, marking an increase of 44%. Among those who invest exclusively in shares, there was an increase from 2.6 million to 3 million in the aforementioned period, corresponding to a rise of 15%. However, the vast majority of investors continue to invest in a mix of asset classes.

Investment Culture

While investing in stocks is on the rise in Germany, the proportion of shareholders is still relatively low when compared with the USA, for example, where one in four citizens owns shares. Some find it particularly problematic that 70% of shares listed on the DAX are owned by foreigners, according to data from the Deutsche Börse Group. Yet if the current trend continues, this ratio could change somewhat. While only 29% of Germans regarded shares as a good investment in 2018, two years later this figure has already risen to 34%. At the same time the percentage of those who describe shares as speculative assets fell from 48% to 41%.

The media often reports on how stock market trading is becoming faster-paced – something that is not reflected in the average holding period for shares. According to the World Federation of Exchange, the average holding period in 2020 was 0.6 years: the same value as in 2010 and 2000. A comparison with 1980, however, reveals major differences: back then investors held shares in their portfolios for an average of 9.7 years before selling them.

Bild von Lorenzo Cafaro auf Pixabay

Über Raphael

Politikwissenschaftler, Journalist. In meinen Arbeiten befasse ich mich mit aktuellen Entwicklungen rund um die Themen Technologie, Finanzen, Wirtschaft und Wissenschaft.

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