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The Investment Fire Power of Millennials

Invest / Direct Property Funds


Aug 09 2018

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Segmenting the population by generation is part of popular culture. The generation that came of age in the 1970s is very different to that of the 1980s or 2000s, having grown up with different technology, political and social events.

Historical events affect not just the nature, but also the size of each generation. Baby boomers are a product of rebound from a difficult period marked by the Great Depression and the Second World War. From 1946 onwards the population surged until after the introduction of the contraceptive pill in the 1960s.

Chart 1.8 shows that in New South Wales the millennials (born between 1982 and 2000) are now the largest generational group, having overtaken the baby boomers in 2006. Millennials will remain a major force throughout the next 40 years, making up the largest proportion of the population into the 2030s. This is partly an ‘echo’ effect — they are the children of the baby boomers — but also reflects migration.

Generation X sits between the baby boomers and the millennials. As the children of the smaller population of Depression and war babies, Generation X will potentially be the only generation that will never take up the largest share of the population. The effect of this will flow through to the size of their children’s generation, the digital natives (2001-2020) although the size of this last group will be significantly bolstered by migration.

The ageing of the population will be dramatic as the baby boomers retire. Over the next 15 years, as the boomers all reach traditional retirement age, the proportion of the population aged over 65 to those of the working age is expected to increase by around 0.5 percentage points a year from 24 percent currently to 33 per cent in 2030. From that point on, the growth in over 65’s slows as Generation X retires. It is a further 17 years, that is, around the late 2040s before we see an acceleration in ageing as the millennials retire.


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