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Working Adult: Investment Products That Requires Less Than S$1,000 To Invest

3 min read

It is official. A possible large number of Singaporeans are trading cryptocurrencies even before investing their first stock.

While it seems cool to be riding the hype of this new “investment” product, let us not forget that it is our hard-earned savings that we are putting all the investment risk on.

Should you have S$1,000 or lesser to kick off your investment journey, below are some products which can help you “dip your toe in the water”.

P.S. At the moment, we will count cryptocurrencies out, much like how we will exclude our TOTO and 4D bets. 

TL;DR – I only have $1,000. What can I invest in?

ProductsMinimum Sum How to invest?
Singapore Savings BondsS$500Singapore Savings Bonds Website
Robo-AdvisorsS$100Autowealth/ Stashaway/ Smartly
Straits Time Index ETFS$100Regular Savings Plan
Blue ChipsS$100Regular Savings Plan
ABF Government BondS100Regular Savings Plan
Money Market FundsAs low as S$100Fundsupermart

Invest with as little as $100 per month

Never belittle the power of a S$1,00. There are actually a lot of financial products out there that can help you beat inflation!

Singapore Savings Bonds

Issued by the Singapore Government, the benefits of investing in the Singapore Savings Bond is obvious

Firstly, we drew a comparison between Singapore Savings Bond and Fixed Deposit

Singapore Savings Bonds vs Banks vs fixed deposits

  • Zero penalties for early redemption
  • Fully backed by the Singapore Government which receives the strongest “AAA” credit rating.

The minimum amount to invest is at $500.

Robo-Advisors (Autowealth, Smartly, Stashaway)

In the past, mutual fund managers pulled together funds and charged a hefty 2-3% management fees. This fee usually erodes returns in the long run.

Robo-advisors plan to change that with a few key features:

  • As they are run by models and algorithms instead of fund managers, they managed to push the cost down to less than 1% fees of the total amount managed.
  • Diversification, as they put your investment into a basket of Global Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs).

There are currently 3 main players in Singapore for robo-advisory and the minimum sum to invest can be as low as any amount per month.

Below is a comparison of the 3 robo-advisors,

Robo-Advisor Comparison Singapore

Regular Savings Plan: Straits Times Index Exchange-Traded Fund (STI ETF)

The STI completed the year 2017 with a total return of 22%. This exceeds the MSCI World Index which made a total return of 13.7%.

STI

A Regular Savings Plan is a good recommended option for investors who are new to investing.

The reason to invest in the STI ETF is that:

  • It allows one to invest in a combination of the top 30 companies in Singapore. These are companies you see every day.
  • It is diversified across many industry verticals.
  • These companies have a regional presence too.

The minimum sum to invest can be as low as $100 per month.

Regular Savings Plan: Blue Chip Stocks

On top of the STI ETF, some of the institutions such as Maybank, Phillip Capital and OCBC actually allows Regular Savings Plan on stocks.

With Regular Savings Plan where an individual puts in a fixed amount of money every month, it allows investors to apply the strategy of dollar cost averaging.

The advantage of dollar-cost averaging is that:

  • It requires less time to monitor
  • Requires less starting capital to invest
  • Forces you to save regularly
  • Buy more shares when the price is low and lesser shares when the price is high.

The minimum sum to invest can be as low as $100 per month.

Regular Savings Plan: ABF Singapore Bond Index Fund

The POSB Invest-saver and Phillip Capital’s Share Builder Plan also have an option to invest in the ABF Singapore Bond Index Fund.

The ABF Singapore Bond Index Fund:

  • invests in Singapore government bonds which is “AAA” rated.
  • It has a potential higher returns than 12-months SGD fixed deposit rates

Over the past 12 years, the ABF Singapore Bond ETF brings an average return of about 2.7% per year.

The minimum sum to invest can be as low as $100 per month.

Money Market Fund

While it is not a commonly mentioned product, Singaporeans can also check out the money market fund.

The money market fund’s portfolio comprises of short-term securities that represent high-quality, liquid debt and monetary instruments.

It is usually characterised as a low-risk, low-return investment.

The minimum sum to invest in funds such as the Lionglobal SGD Money Market can be as low as $100 per month.

P2P Lending Platform (MoolahSense, Funding Societies, Capital Match)

The P2P lending platform offers:

  • Diversification when you choose a wide range of companies to invest in.
  • Monthly returns where the investment principal with interest earned is returned to the investors

There are currently 5 main players in Singapore for P2P Platforms and the minimum sum to invest can be as low as $100 per loan.

Below is a comparison of the P2P Platforms,


Further Reading: Quick Recap: How Much To Invest?

Assuming the 50/30/20 rule, where your monthly salary is split into 3 accounts.

  • 50% of which will be for all your expenses and needs
  • 20% into your savings account as liquid cash
  • 30% will be into your wealth account

Pay Yourself First Seedly

The investment portion should come from the wealth portion which is 30% of your salary.

Age vs Risk profile

Some of the main questions we ask before investing will be:

  • Where should I be allocating my investment money?

The truth is, 90% of an investment’s return is due to the effectiveness of asset allocation.

A good formula to follow will be:

(110 – Your Age) = % of the portfolio that should be in risky assets

 

Your appetite for risk changes over time. Read more about your risk profile.

Check out our blog for more unbiased opinions on your personal finance journey.

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