HK people saving less money: survey

The Deposit Protection Board said on Wednesday that a poll it recently commissioned suggests Hong Kong people are saving less money than they have since 2018.

People put away HK$6,600 on average every month – HK$400 less than last year – according to the results of a telephone survey of 1,006 people conducted by the Public Opinion Research Institute in September.

While that was the mean figure, the median monthly amount of savings remained the same at HK$5,000.

The board’s chairman, Michael Hui, said the economic uncertainty amid the pandemic is to blame for the drop. He also said 62 percent of people have been saving money this year, down from 67 percent last year.

Hui said the survey respondents generally felt positive about their savings, as they have probably lowered their expectations.

The interviewees rated their current savings level at 53.2 out of a hundred on average.

“53.2 is the lowest [rating] among the four years we have conducted the annual survey… [but] is still higher than the passing mark of 50, so it’s still on the positive side,” Hui said.

“In view of the current economic situation, they are willing to adjust their expectations. ‘Probably I should set a lower target, a lower standard for living,’ and as a result of this adjustment, they still feel secure with their current amount of savings.”

He said the respondents believed they would need to have HK$490,000 in savings in order to have a “sense of security”, which was similar to the HK$500,000 figure reported last year.