Singapore investors unfazed by volatile markets: Survey

Fears over sluggish global growth, geopolitical uncertainty and trade tensions have sent markets seesawing for most of the year, but Singapore investors seem unfazed by it all.

Only 12 per cent of those polled here in a new survey regard the volatility roiling markets as an investment risk.

Despite citing inflation, economic instability around the world and trade wars as their main concerns, 40 per cent of Singapore investors see buying opportunities.

They are most optimistic about opportunities at home.

The survey released yesterday also found that 49 per cent of these investors are confident about the prospects of the Singapore market compared with an average of 20 per cent of investors across Asia who are optimistic about the investment outlook here.

Singapore investors are also bullish on the local equities, with close to 60 per cent expecting them to perform better next year.

China is seen as a sound opportunity by 44 per cent of Singapore investors, while 37 per cent cite the potential of the United States.

  • 53% 

  • Singapore investors who report being "quite or very confident" about having enough money to enjoy a comfortable retirement.

"The headline issues globally, including the re-emergence of market volatility and continued uncertainty over how the trade war between the US and China will play out, are likely to continue to affect global markets," said Mr Richard Gillham, head of the product specialist group at Legg Mason Global Asset Management, which conducted the annual survey.

"Against this backdrop, Singapore investors could consider managed volatility investment strategies to help manage downside risks while being positioned to participate in up markets as soon as possible."

Overall, Singaporeans remain largely long-term investors, with two-thirds investing mainly to retire financially comfortable, in line with the rest of Asia. For the longer term, 53 per cent of Singapore investors report being "quite or very confident" about having enough money to enjoy a comfortable retirement.

The survey polled 16,810 investors in 17 markets - including 4,000 across Singapore, Hong Kong, China and Taiwan - and looked at those who will be investing at least US$50,000 (S$68,600) in the next year and have made changes to their investments within the past five years.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 21, 2018, with the headline 'Singapore investors unfazed by volatile markets: Survey'. Print Edition | Subscribe