Singaporeans are tightening their belt this Chinese New Year, with plans to cut overall spending, according to a recent United Overseas Bank survey. (Straits Times report)
The respondents said they intend to spend an average of $2,503 each, down by 11 per cent from last year’s budget of $2,805. About 500 people aged between 18 and 55 years old were polled from November to December on the behaviours and attitudes for the upcoming Chinese New Year.
UOB economist Francis Tan said the belt-tightening for the festive period is not unexpected in view of the lower wage growth last year and the expectation of slower economic growth in the next 12 months.
The survey found that four in five of those surveyed expected the economic situation this year to be the same as or worse than 2016.
“Food plays an important part in the way Singaporean families bond with one another and festive dining would definitely be higher in the pecking order during Lunar New Year celebrations. It is not surprising to see that people are continuing to focus on food during the festive period,” noted Mr Tan.
Singaporeans are also not penny pinching on the tradition of giving red packets – this will make up almost a quarter of the total budget, the survey found. UOB said parents and parents-in-laws will receive the highest amounts in their red packets this year, at S$358 and S$264 respectively. Similar to last year, more than three out of four respondents indicated that they will save the money they receive in their red packets, while 16 per cent will invest it.
Almost 90 per cent of respondents receiving red packets on behalf of their children will deposit the money into their child’s savings account. (Read full news)