S’poreans ill equipped for retirement, survey shows

(News article extracted from MyPaper, 23 Aug 2010)

SINGAPOREANS are not savvy enough when it comes to planning their long-term finances and are, thus, generally unprepared for retirement, a study by HSBC has revealed.

The HSBC Future of Retirement (FoR) survey, which polled 15,000 respondents across 15 markets and about 1,000 Singaporeans aged 30-70, found that a staggering 91 per cent of locals do not have any idea what their retirement income will look like.

HSBC said that this feeling of unpreparedness among Singaporeans was in part due to a tendency to focus more strongly on the short term.

They had limited understanding about their funds for the long haul, as reflected in the 23 per cent who indicated that they are confident about their long-term finances.

This is despite 26 per cent viewing retirement as a strong motivation to save. About 40 per cent of the locals aged 30 to 50 years said they were willing to save between $500 and $800 each month for retirement.

"This shows that Singaporeans are aware of the need for retirement planning but may not have taken action to prepare for it, perhaps because they don't know where to start," said Mr Walter de Oude, chief executive of HSBC Insurance.

He added that Singaporeans should be proactive in seeking the aid of financial advisers, even if they are saving regularly.

"They'll be able to better identify gaps in retirement planning and ensure that they are on track to achieve the retirement lifestyle they want," he said.

(Source: MyPaper, 23 Aug 2010)