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Robust growth in Asia ex-Japan financial assets in 2016: Allianz study

FINANCIAL assets in Asia ex-Japan expanded by an impressive 15 per cent last year, more than twice the global average growth of 7.1 per cent, a study by Allianz Global has found.

Net financial assets of Singapore households also rose at a robust rate of 9.6 per cent. This was thanks to asset growth of 7.4 per cent and a modest rise in debt of 2.5 per cent.

Singapore's debt ratio, however, remained relatively high at 73.7 per cent. The debt ratio refers to liabilities as a percentage of GDP. In terms of assets, insurance and pension assets comprise 46 per cent of Singapore household assets, the highest in Asia.

Michael Heise, Allianz chief economist, said: "Households in Singapore have accumulated quite a lot of pension assets. The high share of pension assets reflects the design of the Singapore pension system with its second strong pillar of funded obligations. However, given the sharp rise in the old age dependency ratio, this is the right thing to do."

Data for Allianz's latest Global Wealth Report was compiled from macroeconomic financial accounts of 53 countries. Total financial assets were calculated based on information from household surveys, bank statistics, statistics on assets held in equities and bonds, and technical reserves.

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