Higher Income Malaysians Aim To Retire By 57 – Survey

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HSBC has just released the results of their inaugural Quality of Life Report and it has presented us with some interesting findings. For one, 57 percent of mass affluent Malaysians surveyed say that they are concerned about retirement. 

The ‘mass affluent’ term is used by marketeers to describe the people who have wealth or income  that are above average. However, they are also not within the top tier of the ‘crazy rich’ category.

According to the HSBC survey, the top three things that these higher income Malaysians are thinking about with regards to retirement are:

  • a decline in physical health
  • higher healthcare costs
  • inflation eating into the value of their retirement savings

Higher income Malaysians want to retire by age 57

Despite their worries, the mass affluent still express their desires to retire at around the age of 57. This is three years shy of the current mandatory retirement age (60 years).

Interestingly enough, the aspired retirement age for Malaysia at 57 years was also the lowest amongst the 9 markets surveyed. It was revealed that the UK held the highest retirement age at 62 years, which is around 4 years earlier than the UK state pension retirement age of 66 years.

HSBC retirement survey


This demographic is also rather split on whether they will continue to work after retirement. According to the report, 44 percent of those surveyed said that they will continue working after retirement. Another 44 percent said they will not. The remaining 12 percent were undecided on the matter.

RM3.9 million in retirement savings needed

In order to retire comfortably, respondents said that they would need approximately RM3.9 million on average to support their desired retirement lifestyle. This is generally lower compared to Hong Kong (RM5.2 million) and Singapore (RM4.4 million) but higher than the UK (RM3.6 million) and the UAE (RM3.3 million). 

To break it down further, millennial respondents (age 25-39 years) in Malaysia said they need an average of RM4.86 million to retire comfortably, gen x (age 40-54 years) RM4.53 million and boomers (age 55-69 years) RM2.57 million.

Most respondents noted that personal savings, retirement savings schemes, and stock fund and bond investments are the top three sources of income that they expect to rely on once they retire. 

Malaysia scored 77 on the Quality of Life index

The report also unveiled a Quality of Life Index which comprises three factors that consumers consider most important to having a good quality of life: Physical and Mental Wellness, and Financial Fitness.

Out of 100, respondents in Malaysia scored 77 on the overall Quality of Life Index which was higher than the overall score across nine markets of 75, but lower compared to other markets such UAE and India (both 80).

The report also found a strong co-relation between financial fitness and mental wellness. The survey found that the financially fit are 4.3 times as likely to score above average on the mental wellness scale, while those scoring above average on mental wellness are 1.9 times as likely to be financially fit than those scoring low on mental wellness.

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