The Italian Retail Investment Market: New Celent Report

New York, NY - 24 March 2008

The Italian investment market presents a promising opportunity for online trading services, particularly among active traders. Celent estimates growth for Italian online trading accounts at over 4% per year.

The Italian retail investment market has an appetite for a variety of instruments and is willing to take risks if the right conditions exist. This trading trend has led to a specific group of investors, defined as active traders, who account for 24% of self-directed investors. Active traders make up a high percentage (8-9%) of the retail investor population, making the Italian market an attractive opportunity for firms.

In The Italian Retail Investment Market, Celent examines the current Italian investment market, taking a closer look at client demographics, products, and firms, with a focus on the active trader market.

The study has identified the following major findings:
• Active traders are growing rapidly: The overall European market of active traders tends to be below 5% of retail investors, while in Italy Celent estimates that approximately 9% of total investors are active traders.
• Male preponderance among active traders: Retail traders and active traders in particular are primarily men between 35 and 45 years old.
• Fragmented provider market: The market is fragmented with numerous brokerage houses and banks offering trading capabilities to retail investors.
• Equities gather the lion's share of products: The most favored securities by individual investors remain equities, followed by derivatives and ETFs.
• Active traders favor sophisticated instruments and foreign markets: Interest in sophisticated instruments among active traders is consistent as well as trading in foreign markets such as CME, NYSE, and NASDAQ.

"Because of the highly fragmented nature of the Italian brokerage market, firms need to be creative in order to capture and retain investors," says Isabella Fonseca, Celent senior analyst and author of the report.

"The market is ready to take on more risk with instruments such as derivatives, commodities, and ETFs, not only domestically but also in foreign markets," she adds.

Data featured in the report investigates current market conditions and can assist firms in developing a strategy to penetrate the Italian online brokerage market.

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