Survey: Financial literacy lacking among M’sians

Survey: Financial literacy lacking among M’sians

PUCHONG: About 53% of respondents surveyed was found not having enough savings to last three months without jobs, despite 70% of them claiming they are in control of their finances.

In a joint survey conducted by RinggitPlus and Visa under the Malaysian Financial Literacy Survey 2019, they also found that 43% of their respondents spend as much as they earn and the numbers soared by 10% last year.

“The lack of awareness of personal finances is an on-going challenge for all of us. It is alarming that people are in denial of their financial reality.

“Many of them don’t take active measures to address their financial situation despite knowing the importance of financial management,” said RinggitPlus chief executive officer Liew Ooi Hann.

Citing an example, Liew said that about 34% of their respondents believe that their savings in the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) would not be sufficient for retirement.

“However, they also don’t have any other retirement plans to compensate for that,” he said.

Among other interesting notes the survey found was as below:

  • 31% of Malaysians admit that they are not in control of their finances, and 43% spend exactly or more than they earn monthly.
  • 37% of those who earn less than RM2,000 do not save at all.
  • 53% of them can survive less than three months with their savings, and 20% of respondents can survive less than a month.
  • 89% of respondents say that EPF savings is not sufficient for retirement, and despite this, 34% of respondents do not have a retirement plan.
  • Only 32% of respondents are aware of what a credit score is and the need to check it regularly.

On related matter, Visa Malaysia country manager Ng Kong Boon said that the joint survey was conducted as part of their efforts to promote financial literacy among Malaysians.

“At Visa, we are about improving lives and economies of the world. We also strive to create financial education programmes and content that we can share among fellow Malaysians to raise awareness and knowledge,” he said.

The survey was conducted using 8,000 respondents across Malaysia.

By G Vinod