Singapore REITsThe Singapore skyline, with a number of distinctive buildings owned by REITs. (Photo: REITsWeek)

The investment habits of Singapore’s affluent and those of its peers in the ‘emerging affluent’ band are increasingly different, and REITs are playing a factor in this divergence.

These are among some of the findings published by Standard Chartered, in its Wealth Expectancy Report for 2019.

In the report, the affluent in Singapore is defined as those who earn SGD10,632 or more monthly.

Meanwhile, the emerging affluent are those who make between SGD5,000 and SGD10,631 per month.

Meanwhile, those with more than USD1 million in investable assets under management have been categorised as high net worth individuals (HNWIs).

Singapore's emerging affluent are focusing on simple savings products like bank deposits, Standard Chartered noted.

But the country’s affluent and HNWIs are open to more advanced products, such as REITs.

This investment inclination may be helping Singapore's affluent and HNWIs grow their wealth faster than those in the emerging affluent band, the bank added.

Singapore’s emerging affluent are also the least likely to invest REITs, with just 23% of this group partaking in the financial instrument.

“They also tend to be using fewer digital wealth management tools than Singapore’s affluent and HNWIs, just 24 per cent of the emerging affluent use online investment portfolios and tools such as robo-advisors, fewer than any other market”, said Standard Chartered.

The top three financial tools used by Singapore’s wealth creators are savings accounts, property investment, and fixed deposit accounts.

“With savings accounts proving especially popular for growing wealth, more advice on how to diversify their wealth management strategy could be crucial to helping more Singaporean wealth creators achieve their aspirations”, the bank noted.

By Shariffa Al-Habshee

Shariffa joined REITsWeek in 2017, and monitors Asia-Pacific REITs for the publication.