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OCBC launches new financial advisory and lifestyle programme targeted at seniors

A NEW financial advisory and lifestyle programme was launched by OCBC Bank on Monday to address issues faced by seniors in the "retirement risk zone", or the period of time of a person's life aged 55 years onwards.

Called Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals, it aims to provide wealth solutions that protect and grow seniors' investment funds that have accumulated over the years, while minimising investment risks in order to maintain their desired lifestyles.

According to OCBC's research, seniors have a higher-than-expected risk appetite and that "returns from investments" was the most popular choice when it comes to deciding their primary source of income during their retirement years.

Even as seniors are keen to invest in a managed portfolio of income-yielding products to maintain or increase cash flow, a common gripe was that there was often no advice from their respective financial institutions on when to sell or rebalance their investment portfolios to mitigate downside risks.

To tackle this, the bank said that one of the key aspects of Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals is to ensure that market events do not disrupt the retirement plans of clients. The bank has identified 30 unit trusts and bancassurance products which are most suitable for clients to safeguard their assets and build their wealth.

The programme also addresses health matters faced by seniors, by distributing a range of relevant hospitalisation, personal accident and selected whole life insurance plans that require no medical underwriting.

One finding from the research was that seniors want the option of contingency healthcare plans in the event of unfortunate circumstances.

The programme is partnering medical care providers such as caregiving startup Jaga-Me Home Care to provide clients with medical nursing home care services at preferential rates.

Beyond financial adviser for wealth protection, the programme has partnered the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) to develop a customised curriculum to teach seniors Internet banking and cashless payments conducted at 30 Silver Infocomm Junctions located islandwide.

In addition, the usual rewards and deals from merchant tie-ups - ranging from travel to dining and from medical to fitness - have also been incorporated into the programme.

Dennis Tan, head of consumer financial services Singapore, OCBC Bank, said that seniors are now concerned about wealth protection and how to further accumulate their current retirement funds as they have "reached a stage of self-actualisation and the need to constantly stay abreast of current trends".

He added: "Celebrating what they have achieved is not nearly enough, we need to provide regular and timely financial advice. We also need to prepare them for the ever-changing digital transformation of the banking industry through workshops and provide access to relevant wealth and insurance products. We want our senior customers to be able to enjoy the same level of ease and comfort in today's banking world."

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