April 21 (UPI) -- For the fourth year in a row, Americans cited real estate as the best long-term investment, beating out stocks, gold and bonds.
According to the annual Gallup poll, more than one-in-three respondents, 34 percent, said real estate was the best way to earn a return on a long-term investment. Twenty-six percent said it was the stock market or mutual funds. Gold was the favored investment of 18 percent, with 12 percent picking a standard savings account or CD. Five percent named bonds the smartest long-term investment.
Real estate reclaimed its mantle as the favored investment tool of a plurality of Americans in 2013 after the housing market made gains following the Great Recession from 2007-09, when housing costs plummeted and marginal mortgages bundled as securities were a poison pill in many investment portfolios.
In 2011, gold was by far the preferred investment, earning the same 34 percent real estate did in this year's poll. It exceeded the next closest form of investment by 15 percentage points as investors sought a durable form of investment that could survive an economic downturn with more stability than real estate or stocks.
Gallup's poll queried 1,019 Americans age 18 or older from April 5-9. It has a margin of error of 4 percentage points.