Another myth in the making?
Ho Ching's proposal to invite the public to co invest with Temasek has been receiving quite a lot of approval and favourable comments. At face value it looks like another great proposal for investors to grow their nest eggs. But before people plonk in their hard earned savings, they better think very carefully as investment is a high risk enterprise. The higher the returns, the greater the risks. Not very long ago, there was this great scheme called COWEC. It is a company welfare scheme where employees and companies joinly contributed to the fund to invest in stocks with the belief that stock investment was a sure win game in the long run. It was supposed to guarantee a higher rate of return than the CPF. It is now history. The same crazy belief also reemerged in the early 1990s when all the clever analysts and investment experts were churning out reports on how great investing in stocks and shares were against all other instruments. In the long run, investing in stocks will generate the highest returns compare to other forms of investments. This faith led to the release of CPF funds for stocks and shares and a kind of frenzy when every CPF contributor had a stock investment account. Again it became history when many of them lost their nest eggs, contributing to the miserable state of our CPF savings. Would co investment with Temasek lead to the same fate? Can investment guarantee a safe and high return? The fact that the CPF Life scheme has an escape clause in case the fund becomes insolvent speaks for itself.