Lower-income S’poreans excel in financial planning, APAC millennials most resilient

Lower-income S’poreans excel in financial planning, APAC millennials most resilient

Singaporeans believe that being wealthy does not equate to having solid financial resilience, as high-income individuals are more likely to exceed their monthly budget than lower-income individuals (19% versus 22%).

Sun Life’s inaugural survey "Asia Financial Resilience Index," also found that lower-income respondents score better (60%) than those in the high-income category (52%) in being able to cover short-term financial obligations while saving for long-term.

Millennials are the most financially resilient generation in Singapore, with higher confidence in meeting long-term goals (75% vs 68%) and managing month-to-month finances (71% vs 67%) compared to older age groups. 

Despite this, only 44% of millennials have a financial plan beyond one year.

Across Asia, confidence exceeds preparedness for long-term financial goals. In Singapore, 70% are confident, yet only 44% have a plan beyond a year.

Trust and emotion play significant roles in financial decisions for 42% of Singaporeans. Financial institutions are the most trusted, followed by friends and family. 

Whilst social media is a common source of advice (37%), only 10% trust it. Despite a desire for more financial education (39%), only 22% seek professional help.

The Sun Life Asia Financial Resilience Index surveyed 8,000 people across eight markets, measuring resilience against confidence, behaviour, planning, tools, and resources.

The region’s perspective

Asia Pacific millennials emerge as the most resilient, with 75% optimistic about their future and 70% confident in meeting long-term goals. However, only 42% have a financial plan beyond a year. A rural-urban divide exists, with urban dwellers feeling more financially secure (58%) compared to rural counterparts (51%).

Despite high confidence and optimism in Asia Pacific, many also lack a long-term financial plan. Confidence exceeds preparedness for long-term goals; 69% feel confident, but only 40% have a plan beyond a year. 

Emotion and trust influence financial decisions; 46% consider them significant. Financial institutions are the most trusted, followed by family, friends, and independent advisors. Only 23% seek professional financial advice.

Wealth doesn't guarantee resilience; even wealthy respondents lack preparedness. Both lower and high-income earners often exceed monthly budgets (21%). Only 45% of high-income individuals plan beyond a year. Broom stresses that financial resilience requires action, offering free digital tools and holistic advice.


Kenn Lang'at

Passionate educator and journalist, inspiring minds and uncovering stories worldwide