On average, 50% of people in Malaysia expect they will have to work after retirement. Reasons vary among the different generations, households, and genders—from family obligations, desired lifestyles, and financial status, reflecting the diverse nature of people’s thinking about retirement.1
That said, 48% of people in Malaysia feel they are likely to achieve their retirement. The proportion is even higher for Millennials and Gen Z in Malaysia, at 52% and 51% respectively.1
This could be due to the fact that people in Malaysia start saving for retirement at a relatively earlier age, at 30 years old, and that they aspire to retire at age 56—four years before the country’s official retirement age.1
Multigenerational households that were once a common way of life in Asia are now much more disjointed. This has taken its toll on the feasibility of familial support that older generations would previously have been able to rely on during their old age.
In fact, only 9% of people in Malaysia said they are saving and investing for elderly’s expenses, the lowest in their financial objectives1, which may also explain why a majority of them expect to work after retirement.
On the flip side, nearly a quarter (23%) of people said they are saving and investing for their children’s expenses. Among parents in Malaysia, 78% of them said they have started saving and investing for their children’s future financial well-being, and that 73% worry more about their children’s future financial well-being than their own retirement.1
Globally, women aged 65 or older received 26% less income from pensions than men on average, according to the OECD.2
Women tend to face the challenge of building their career and raising their family. Coupled with likelihood of reduced income after giving birth, they would have lower lifetime earnings and slower accumulation of pension benefits.
Female labour force participation and pay generally lag those of men. In Malaysia, women earn 13% less than men.1
Women are more likely to outlive their spouse. As such, 57% of women in Malaysia said for emergency is their top savings and investment objective, followed by for financial independence and for personal consumption.1
1 Manulife Investment Management commissioned NielsenIQ to conduct an online survey of 2,000 people from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, and Malaysia – 500 people from each market – who are aged 20 to 60 between 25 August and 6 September 2022. The research aims to assess people’s retirement readiness and aspirations, including savings and investments, and lifestyles and family issues they consider when planning for retirement.
2 Source: OECD: “Towards improved retirement savings outcomes for women”, 2021.
The good news is that technology can help women and men better plan for and manage their retirement savings. Proprietary data from Manulife Investment Management revealed that more women than men use digital platforms to access investment information and to invest.