NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Wealth management professionals focus heavily on the financial needs of Baby Boomers. That's understandable: Americans born between 1946 and 1964 own a disproportionate share of U.S. financial assets. An Investment Company Institute study from several years ago revealed that households headed by individuals in the 40 to 64 age-range own 55% of stocks and bonds.
But Boomer investors may be in trouble now. Investors need to pay attention to changes in how companies communicate news that affects stock prices. For decades, technological changes have forced companies to adapt their investor communications strategies. In the past year, regulatory changes have amplified the impact of technological change.
Companies are increasingly turning to social media to announce news.
In April 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission began allowing companies to announce financial news on Twitter (TWTR) and Facebook (FB). That same month, Zillow (Z) became the first corporation to take earnings conference call questions on those social platforms. According to a recent report by the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, 77% of Fortune 500 companies keep active Twitter accounts.
The problem for Boomers is that older Americans are less active on social media than members of younger age groups. As a result, middle-aged and older individuals risk being left behind as more companies begin to announce corporate developments on Twitter. Among Baby Boomers age 50 to 64 who use the Internet, only 11% use Twitter, according to the Pew Research Center. That compares with a 35% participation rate for Twitter among those age 18 to 29 who are online.