SINGAPORE (Oct 29): Singapore’s emerging affluent are still far from achieving their top financial goals with their current wealth management strategies, finds a recent study commissioned by Standard Chartered Bank.

The Emerging Affluent Study 2018 – Climbing the Prosperity Ladder is the culmination of 11,000 emerging affluent consumers’ views from 11 markets across Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Out of the 1,000 polled in Singapore, the top three financial goals in the city state were revealed to be children’s education (44%), an investment property (22%), and funds to set up one’s own business (22%).

The survey’s findings showed that more than half (52%) of Singapore’s market choose to invest in financial products to achieve their financial goals, but place their assets in lower-yield financial products.

Relying on earnings increase also proves unproductive, as only 17% say they are “very satisfied” with the level of increase despite nearly three quarters (68%) saying they have received higher earnings in the past year.

Notably, 58% of respondents in Singapore say they prefer using their savings account to achieve their top financial goals – higher than the global average of 49% as well as Singapore’s respondents in last year’s survey (53%).

According to Standard Chartered, this tendency could explain why a quarter of respondents in the city state feel they are “very far” (25%) or “far” (25%) from achieving their top financial goals.

Its survey also suggested that consumers in Singapore could meet their financial goals faster if they gained a higher level of investment knowledge (62%) and seek expert financial advice (50%).

Nonetheless, a significant portion (60%) of respondents in Singapore agree that digital wealth management has brought them closer to meeting their financial goals, with 65% believing they have more control over their money and investments thanks to online banking.

Another 61% feel that familiarity with digital tools has been vital to their personal success.

“Emerging affluent consumers may find that overreliance on savings accounts and earnings risks delaying achievement of financial goals,” notes Andrew Chia, head, retail banking, Standard Chartered Bank Singapore.

“As a digital bank with a human touch, we are excited to partner our clients in managing their finances and growing their wealth, by providing needs-based advice, a comprehensive suite of banking, investment and bancassurance products, and convenient channels to transact anytime, anywhere,” he adds.