SINGAPORE - Singaporeans keen to shore up their retirement savings can now top up their Central Provident Fund (CPF) accounts more easily.
A new service by OCBC bank allows its customers to make top-ups to their CPF accounts by using the bank's mobile app or Internet banking platform.
OCBC said on Wednesday (Aug 10) that it is the first bank to offer this service to make retirement planning easier for Singaporeans.
Typically, people have to visit the CPF mobile app or use Giro to make CPF contributions. They can also fill in forms on the CPF website to make e-applications.
An OCBC spokesman said that the roll-out of this service is timely as CPF is one of the top sources for Singaporeans to fund their retirement, according to the bank's financial wellness survey for 2021.
The study also showed that more Singaporeans are taking retirement planning seriously, with two in three making financial retirement plans last year.
The bank's customers also made 30 per cent more top-up transactions and 25 per cent more annual contributions to CPF last year, compared with 2020.
This is also supported by findings from the CPF Board's annual report released last month, which showed that CPF members' balances hit a new high as at the end of last year, exceeding half a trillion dollars.
OCBC head of consumer financial services in Singapore Sunny Quek said: "Our roll-out of this new service extends our ambition to make financial planning more accessible, simple and inclusive for Singaporeans.
"CPF is a major pillar of many Singaporeans' retirement planning and contributing to their CPF accounts will enable them to receive payouts for retirement income."
He noted that more than 100,000 customers made contributions to their CPF accounts in 2021.
"So extending this direct payment solution to them from our digital banking platforms will enhance their financial planning by making the process of voluntary CPF contributions more seamless," he said.
By logging into the OCBC app or Internet banking site, customers can view all their financial information on a OCBC Financial OneView dashboard, understand how much they need to hit their retirement goals, and then make top-ups.
"This will enable customers to better track their retirement goals and hopefully be able to achieve the retirement lifestyle they desire," Mr Quek said.
OCBC already allows customers to sync all their financial information from various agencies using the Singapore Financial Data Exchange (SGFinDex), which is a centrally managed online consent system that involves seven participating banks.
This means people can have an overview of their finances across deposits, credits cards, loans, investments, securities-related holdings, assessable income, and CPF account balances.
The bank also uses artificial intelligence to provide customers with personalised financial planning, such as guiding them with virtual nudges so they can make informed decisions about savings, investments and liabilities, OCBC said in a media statement.
By the end of this year, OCBC will also integrate information on insurance policies into its app in the next phase of SGFinDex.