Low-risk Investments In Malaysia For Retirees


Retirement, which is supposed to be a restful period that every working person should look forward to, can cause major financial headaches. Young professionals are struggling to save enough for retirement, while retirees are struggling to stretch their retirement funds.

If you fall into either of the above categories, you’re probably wondering what your options are. Sure, it’s tempting to just stuff your money in your sock drawer where it’s safe and sound and learn to be extremely frugal in your retirement years. But where is the fun in that?

You need your money to keep growing after you retire. And remember, you don’t want to run out of money six months before your passing. Your money should outlive you.

It used to be that if you just invest in different investment vehicles early into your working life, the returns you accumulate by the time you retire would be enough to last you throughout your period of retirement. However, this may not hold true, especially with inflation factored in.

Naturally, retirees don’t want to risk losing any money. After all, they can’t make the money back. What can you do to grow your money at the minimum of 4% to 5% a year while keeping your risks low?

The secret lies in having the right class of assets in your portfolio and then leaving it alone. There is no such thing as a no-risk investment. But as it turns out, a broadly diversified portfolio left alone to grow for decades can allow your money to grow, yet as a whole, it can be just as safe as if you left it in the bank. But how do you make sure you get the right mix of low-risk investments?

Generally, your asset allocation should gradually change towards a more conservative one as you age, with more allocation in safer assets (like capital guarantee unit trust funds), and less in risky assets (like volatile shares). As you reach retirement age, it is important to have enough income generating assets in your portfolio to replace the loss of income.

For a younger investor, stocks aren’t as risky as they seem. For the middle-aged, they’re pretty risky. And for a retired person, they can be nuclear-level dangerous.

Some of the assets a retiree can consider are:

Amanah Saham Bumiputera (ASB)

ASB is a premier unit trust investment specifically for Malaysian Bumiputera. It is managed by Amanah Saham Nasional Berhad (ASNB), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB).

Some of the ASB features:

  • Capital guaranteed – low risk
  • No sales charges – higher return
  • No redemption charges – higher return
  • Maximum investment amount: 200,000 units

Unit trust funds

Unit trust funds are widely known for having lower risks due to its widely diversified portfolio holdings. It can be utilised as a medium to long term investment which can be cashed out at anytime. Unit trust funds are widely known for having lower risks because they arespread over several types of investment categories. Nevertheless, this does not mean that it does not come with risk at all. it is crucial that we study the risks involved and make sure that it is well aligned to our risk profile before we make our decision to invest in the funds. Funds invested in stocks are relatively higher risk due to higher volatility, but it comes with a higher growth potential. On the other hand, fixed-income funds normally yield lower returns, due to the lower volatility and risk elements of the funds.

Savings bonds

To further enhance one’s investment portfolio, one can consider investing in bonds for potential steady, long term gains. Bonds yield higher returns compared to cash investments and is leaps and bounds more profitable than sitting on one’s cash. Bonds may generate a stable interest income with a yield that is usually higher than the interest received from normal deposit for a comparable tenure.

Many Malaysians know that it is critical to start planning for their retirement, but most are not sure what to do with their money once they retire. This is probably due to lack of understanding on the investment landscape in the country. Worse still, some just can’t be bothered due to the hassle involved. If you are unsure, always seek the professional advice of a financial advisor or funds manager. Keep in mind, there are many options available!


Looking for ways to plan for your retirement? Here are some ways you can protect your EPF savings for retirement.

Kick-starting your retirement savings? Consider getting a professional financial planner to find out the best way to manage your money.

Think you are covered post-employment with your EPF savings? Here’s why your EPF savings may not be enough for a comfortable retirement. 

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