Martin Lee @ Sg
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Singapore May Raise Retirement Age to 68

Yesterday, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Lim Boon Heng mentioned that Singapore may need to raise its retirement age to 68.

Reasons cited included Singaporeans living longer and needing to accumulate more for their old age.

This is probably one of those sensitive issues and the government is probably trying to test the ground first by using “may need to raise”. Depending on the response from the ground, they can then modify their policies accordingly. So make sure you voice out your comments if you feel strongly about this.

I always felt that the idea of a retirement age is something personal. No matter what the official retirement age is, if you have no money at that point in time, you will still have to continue working.

Nowadays, I am seeing more and more elderly people selling tissues; not just in hawker centers but also in the streets! Some of them are even collecting used metal tin cans from dust bins. I don’t think any one of them would be doing it if they had a choice. The official retirement age probably wouldn’t mean anything to them.

For another group of people, they enjoy their work so much that they will just continue working. The concept of retirement does not even exist.

Nevertheless, the official retirement age does have an important implication. It might reflect the age when your CPF minimum sum or CPF life payout starts. By increasing the retirement age from 62 to 65, we already saw the payouts being delayed to 65.

If the official retirement age is increased further to 68, does that mean our CPF minimum sum or CPF life payouts will only start at 68?

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8 comments
Garrett says 8 years ago

Completely…. so not surprised. Come on, who was dumb enough to think that the govt would leave the retirement age and CPF LIFE alone just like that? If anyone below their 40s now think they can retire at 65 or even 68 is going to find themselves sorely mistaken when they reach retirement age. For the youngsters, the retirement age is going to be in the region of 70+ as the govt will continuously shift it higher and higher.

I wonder how many of the not-so-financially-savvy younger population knows that once upon a time, one could withdraw all money from CPF at age 55.

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Lawrence says 8 years ago

We all Singaporean going to or rather is already living in “Animal’s Farm” kind of living conditions.

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Lawrence says 8 years ago

My mom who is 91 already has told me when she was about 60+ that our “Yament’ has been using prices of 99 leasehold HDB flats to control us the working population. Don’t believe my mom? Then tell me who can or allow to rent from HDB?
You have to work till you burst your heart (sorry I mean your butt off) to pay for 20 to 30 years mortgage for a 400K to 500K 4 room HDB now.
By then, you have nothing much left. So what to do?
But to keep on working your butt off.
How sad, we are all going to live in Singapore just like the story of “animals living in the animal’s farm”
Quote:
“All animals are equal. but some are more equal than others”.

NB:

This is my mom’s opinion about 30 years ago. You see my Mom already knew what “Yament & HDB were doing then. Still don’t agree with my Mom? Try renting from HDB then.

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Desmond says 8 years ago

Retirement age keep going up and up, there will be many, many commoners would not be able to touch their hard earned monies in CPF before their departure. I wonder if government has this kind of statistics at 68 as compared to 62 …

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The Watchman says 8 years ago

Where have all the retirement planners gone?
I forgot there are no real retirement planners but only salesmen and women disguised as some Executive Financial Consultants who also double up as retirement planners.What have they done for Singaporeans?
Well, first they made Singaporeans under insured until SM Goh had to advise one social enterprise insurer to do something about it. Will this ‘people before profit’ social enterprise heed SM Goh’s call?
Now I wonder who will come out to speak about how to save for retirement?
Something has to be done about it…..if they rely on CPF many can’t have enough in the the minimum sum.
How to….???
when the salesmen masqueraded as financial experts are either conning Singaporeans into buying yesterday’s high return funds or high risk funds and lose their pants and their CPF fund or
investing into so called low risk single premium endowment products that guarantee that they won’t have enough fund for their retirement.
Either one of the strategies the only people who will retire comfortably are the salesmen and their benefactors, the insurance companies. Both work hand in glove to ‘serve’ the citizens of Singapore

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VS Lingam says 8 years ago

There is no smoke without fire. Since a high-ranking minister has said something like “Singapore may need to raise its retirement age to 68”, you can bet that it is gonna happen. Question is when and at what age.

As 2 of the posters above have said, the ulterior motive behind raising retirement age is to delay the payout of CPF monies. Now this freaking govt is even saying that sg ppl live longer than Finnish ppl, on average, and hence all the more reason to raise retirement age (and consequently delay CPF payouts). This govt is pulling wool over our eyes.

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DanielP says 8 years ago

The reason for this exercise of continually raising the official retirement age is because the govt does not want to pick up the tab for non working Singaporeans.

A problem that probably cannot be solved, since people are living longer.

Inflation is another problem, the majority of Singaporeans will never be able to save enough for retirement.

For the average Singaporean, our “wealth” is locked up in housing, which cannot be unlocked unless we move out and live in the streets.

With the govt’s open door policy, keeping one’s job into our late 40s, early 50s is already very difficult.

I think the govt already knows our feelings, they may adjust the timing of its implementation but never will they change course.

It is a problem they cannot solve, other than by continually raising the retirement age.

Our ruling elite have no retirement since after they leave office, there are so many jobs waiting for them, even if they dont need the money or actually have to do anything or if they screw it up. The jobs are there for as long as they want it.

You can only solve a problem if you want to solve it, and you will only want to solve it, if it affects you. Since it does not affect them, they can never solve this problem.

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Boh Lui says 8 years ago

Wasn’t CPF Life supposed to be the miracle cure for longevity? Unfortunately for the scholars they didn’t think through hard enough and consider other factors like housing costs rising above general inflation rate and eating up most of CPF, medical costs rising above inflation rate and future H&S premiums wiping out most of Medisave, and stagnant salaries rising less than inflation rate due to massive availability of younger & cheaper foreigners.

CPF monthly withdrawals (whether CPF Life or Minimum Sum drawdown) is based on at least minimum subsistence level. The lowest amount that CPF will disburse monthly is about equal to the Public Assistance amount, currently about $350, even for those with only $2K or $3K in their CPF. That’s why for those with very little in their CPF, their monthly payments will be gone within 2 or 3 years — forget about the so-called 20-year payout! Of course for those with at least the $123K minimum sum, your monthly payout will be bigger and probably last for 20 yrs.

CPF has already re-calculated their sums and projected they cannot pay all those 65+ by 2020, so better start the process to gradually increase the drawdown age (as this is tied to the official retirement age). As they need to raise the minimum monthly payout over the years inline with inflation & Public Assistance. I fully expect the drawdown age to be not less than 70 yrs old by the year 2030.

Anyway in Singapore the official retirement age is meaningless. Employers can and are currently getting rid of workers way before they even hit 55-yr old. Furthermore, apart from drawing a pathetic monthly amount from CPF, the official retirement age does not have any other benefit, unlike in other countries where it is tied to pensions, free medical, subsidised housing, subsidised transport/cars etc. No wonder 2 million French are marching against raising their retirement age from 60 to 62.

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