According to the latest Travelers Risk Index, 52 percent of consumers say they think the world is getting riskier, down from 63 percent when the survey was launched in 2013. The 2017 index identifies the overall perception of risks for consumers and business leaders and what worries them most. In addition, thirty-seven percent of business leaders feel the business environment is getting riskier, compared with 48 percent just three years ago.
The Travelers Risk Index also found that businesses and consumers shared concerns about:
Cyber threats: 56 percent of businesses and 54 percent of consumers worry about cyber risks.
Distracted driving: 40 percent of millennials worry that they are too distracted by their mobile phone while driving, and 30 percent of businesses worry that distracted driving by employees puts their companies at risk.
Safety at home and on the job: 54 percent of consumers have personal safety concerns, and 36 percent of businesses worry about employees being injured in the workplace.
Workforce changes: Businesses ranked recruiting challenges as their greatest emerging risk, and consumers ranked the ability to stay competitive in the job market as one of their top 5 emerging risks.
Additional concerns include emerging technology, extreme weather and personal safety.
“Rapid technological changes are affecting risk perceptions,” said Patrick Gee, senior vice president of Claim at Travelers. “The gig economy, artificial intelligence and automation are weighing heavily on people’s minds. While these factors present new risks, there are ways to mitigate those risks and protect families and businesses.”
The Consumer View
Financial concerns continue to be the most worrisome risk for consumers, though fewer worry about it this year than last (64 percent versus 70 percent). Identity theft is the second leading concern, followed by personal safety risks and cyber threats.
When it comes to severe weather, 63 percent say they have a plan for what to do before severe weather strikes, while 56 percent say they have a plan for after severe weather passes.
The Business View
Financial issues remain a leading overall concern for businesses. Sixty-one percent of business leaders worry some or a great deal about medical cost inflation, followed by 55 percent who worry about employee benefit costs. Fifty-one percent of respondents worry about their ability to attract and retain skilled personnel. Despite these worries, only one in four businesses makes risk management a strategic priority.
For full results, visit www.travelers.com/riskindex.
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