The COVID-19 crisis has jolted our lifestyles in a variety of ways. We are working from home, streaming content more frequently, and adopting heightened hygiene habits.
In terms of finances, the pandemic has left an equally strong footprint: 1 in 3 Singaporeans say the pandemic has improved their relationship with money.
This is according to a Singsaver survey that polled 1,000 Singaporeans from March and April 2021.
It found that 62 per cent of Singaporeans are investing in new products.
Among those in this group, 4 in 10 started investing in bonds and stocks while 27 per cent started investing in cryptocurrency.
Singaporeans are also reportedly more active in planning for retirement, with 28 per cent taking charge of this area since COVID-19 struck.
A wave of new financial products
This spike of interest in investing comes as a many new FinTech services were launched in Singapore from digital brokerages to robo-advisors.
Chinese digital brokerages Tiger Brokers and moomoo were launched in Singapore over the past year.
Robo-advisors have also been actively promoting their services recently. Competition has been heated with more than 10 of such services in the market providing investing options in a variety of financial products.
MORE ON THIS TOPIC: I share about my own experience investing in three services: Stashaway, Syfe, and DBS’s digiPortfolio.
Work from home, spend from home
The savvier attitudes does not equate to Singaporeans cutting back on spending. The same poll found that 55 per cent of Singaporeans are seeing up to 20 per cent increase in monthly expenditure since the pandemic.
The top three categories Singaporeans highlighted an increase in spending in are Food & Drinks (66 per cent), Healthcare (35 per cent), and Utilities (34 per cent).
The rise in utility cost can be attributed to work-from-home conditions, while healthcare may have gone up as people take extra precaution to avoid falling sick during the pandemic.
In April last year, Business Times reported that all three major food delivery platforms Deliveroo Singapore, foodpanda and GrabFood saw a surge in demand for food delivery services during the Circuit Breaker.
It looks this consumer shift to e-commerce is here to stay, especially as Singapore tightens COVID-19 measures with the recent rise in community cases.