Most popular stocks depending on your generation

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CMC Markets has published some very interesting data on trading demographics observed during Q1 2023, which highlight the trading preferences of the firm’s clients, based on their age group.

The research breaks down what CMC Market’s active, equity trading client base trade, into five generational cohorts, that range from clients born in the late 1920s, to those born in the late 1990s or after.

Silent Generation

The eldest cohort is known as the Silent Generation whose members were born between 1928 and 1945 CMC note that they are the most successful at trading and are far more comfortable with holding positions than their much younger counterparts in Generation Z.

US EV manufacturer Telsa (TSLA) is the older generation’s top stock pick. But they are also happy to trade active, liquid UK stocks such as Lloyds Banking (LLOY), its rival Barclays (BARC), engineer Rolls Royce (RR) and housebuilder Taylor Wimpey (TW).

The Silent Generation was the only cohort to have Rolls Royce in their most popular stocks list during the first quarter of 2023.

A shrewd choice, as the stock is up by almost 66% year to date.

Baby Boomers

Baby Boomers are the generation who were born between 1946 and 1964 and so have an average age of 66 years.

This group also has Telsa as its most popular stock, but the cohort is more technology-focused than the Silent Generation, with Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Nvidia (NVDA), Meta Platforms (META) and Microsoft (MSFT) in its top ten traded stocks.

The boomers only found room for two UK-listed names but once again they picked Lloyds and Barclays.

Generation X

Generation X, the generational cohort that I belong to, were born between 1965 and 1981. GenXers trading stocks with CMC Markets were even more technology-focused than the boomers, with 9 out of their top 10 stocks falling into the technology and growth categories

Their stock selection is not dissimilar to that of the Boomers, however, GenX also embraced cryptocurrencies and the blockchain with crypto-exchange operator Coinbase (COIN) making it to number 9 on their list.

The other outlier in that list was Credit Suisse, which has subsequently been taken over, or should that be rescued?, by its rival UBS.


Millennials are the generation born between 1981 and 1996 and are the second youngest of the generational cohorts among CMC clients.

As we might have expected technology stocks dominate the cohort’s top 10 they were the only group to have two EV names among their most traded stocks with NIO Inc (NIO) coming in at number 10 alongside Tesla in the top spot.

Amazon has been a common pick among the cohorts (although it’s absent from the Silent Generations’ top 10) however in the millennial list, it only managed to climb to the number 5 spot versus the number 3 position in the GenX list.


Finally, we come to GenZ, those born between 1997 and 2012.  The youngest generation embraced “Meme Stocks” with Gamestop featuring at number 7 in their 10 most traded stocks.

Coinbase also features, coming in at number 8.

Gen Z’s list also contains the so-called “FAANG” stocks with Meta Platforms (formerly Facebook ) Apple, Amazon, and Netflix (NFLX) featuring, alongside Google’s parent company Alphabet (GOOGL).

Overall there are more similarities than differences between the generations, at least in their stock choices, however, it seems that age and experience brings a certain wisdom or know-how to stock selection and trading.

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