Investor optimism fell to +24, down from +40 in February because of the overall economy, according to a new Wells Fargo/Gallup Investor and Retirement Optimism Index. Retired respondents' optimism dropped to +17, down from +38 in February and +61 a year ago.

The survey found that 33 percent of investors say low interest rates will cause them to delay retirement and 45 percent of working Americans and 34 percent of retirees fear that current low interest rates may cause them to outlive their money in retirement.

Low interest rates also are sending investors to riskier investments they may not have chosen to invest in in a higher interest rate climate.

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