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Written Answer by Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower, to Parliamentary Question on CPF payouts

NOTICE PAPER NO. 1558 OF 2018 FOR THE SITTING ON 18 FEBRUARY OR LATER
QUESTION NO. 1159 FOR WRITTEN ANSWER

MP: ASSOC PROF WALTER THESEIRA

To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) what is the number and percentage of CPF members aged 65 and above receiving monthly payouts under the Retirement Sum Scheme and CPF LIFE Schemes, broken down by gender and size of HDB flat/private property type; (b) what are the average monthly payouts; (c) what percentage receive monthly payouts of less than $500; and (d) whether the Ministry will provide CPF microdata access to external researchers to facilitate research into retirement adequacy.

Answer 

  1. In December 2018, there were about 268,000 CPF members aged 65 and above who received retirement payouts from either the CPF LIFE or Retirement Sum Scheme.  About half of these recipients are females. Among the 76% of members who are property owners, 17% own private property, 54% own 4-room-and-larger HDB flats while 29% own 3-room-and-under HDB flats.
  2. Of those who received payouts, 74% had monthly payouts under $500.  The average monthly payouts differs greatly across the generations; the average monthly payout for CPF members aged 65 to 69 is more than double that of members aged 80 to 87. 

  3. Breakdown of members receiving RSS and/or CPF LIFE payouts1 (Dec 2018)
     Age band 
     No. of members
     Average monthly payout
     65-69
     116,000
     $450
     70-79
     130,000 
     $290
     80-87
     19,000 
     $220

  4. In addition to CPF payouts, members may receive additional retirement support from the Government through the Silver Support scheme. This provides them with an average income supplement of about $600 per quarter, which is in addition to the other forms of Government support such as the Workfare Income Supplement, GST vouchers and ComCare.
  5. With increased labour force participation and improvements to the CPF system made in the past decade, we expect younger cohorts to have higher CPF payouts. For example, about 6 in 10 active members turning age 55 in 2017 have at least the CPF Basic Retirement Sum (BRS) in their Retirement Accounts. The BRS of $83,000 at age 55 in 2017 will give members a monthly payout of about $700 to $750 for life.
  6. The Member also asked about sharing of CPF microdata. CPF Board aims to strike balance interests of external researchers with the need to safeguard members’ privacy.  It is open to collaborating on research projects that can better inform the development of retirement adequacy policy. 

FOOTNOTE

  1. CPF members aged 87 in 2018 belong to the first cohort of members under the Retirement Sum Scheme (RSS). CPF members age 88 and above in 2018 do not have the Retirement Sum concept and were able to withdraw their CPF Savings in full at age-55.