Why are Singaporeans not saving enough?
We have this marvelous scheme called the CPF. This is meant to take care of our savings for old age. We put in a big chunk of our earnings into this scheme, thinking that it would be enough. Now we all know that it will never be enough. Inflation is not the only thing that will eat away whatever we have put aside. That is why Singaporeans are constantly reminded to save, outside the CPF. What a joke! For the baby boomers, one of the most disastrous policy that affected their life savings was the liberalisation of the CPF on the belief that if you put money in the stock market, in the long run, you will be richer. It has been proven that it was a folly and many lost everything they had in their CPF. The stockmarket is not the stockmarket that we knew in the past. It is now a casino, without fundamentals. But what are the main causes to fail this great savings scheme? The biggest item that Singaporeans need to spend on is the flat or home. If we keep raising the property prices, mark to market, Singaporeans will end up saving just to buy a flat and be left with nothing. The younger Singaporeans shall give up hope of withdrawing any money from the CPF when they reach 55, or to receive anything when they reach 62. A big chunk of their money will be buried in the flat with the rest locked up in minimum sum and medisave. The CPF scheme is now a red herring. The Singaporeans are saving but spending at the same time. I should have called this saving scheme a myth.