Launched in November 2019, the Singlife Account touts itself as “a smarter, simpler way to manage your savings”.
The Singlife Account delivers a return of 1.0% per annum (p.a.) on the first $10,000 deposited without any lock-in period and 0.5% p.a. on the next S$90,000. This current interest rate of 1.0% and 0.5% per annum (as of 28 July 2022) is a reduction from the previous high of 1.5% and 0.5%. However, it is still possible to enjoy up to 2.0% p.a for the first $10,000. Users can sign up for two other campaigns that will earn them an additional 0.5% p.a each. The first campaign is “Save, Spend, Earn” whereby users have to spend a minimum monthly sum of $500 on the Singlife Debit Card to earn an additional 0.5% p.a. The next campaign is “Grow 0.5% p.a. Bonus Return“, users can sign up for a Grow policy and fund a minimum of $1,000 to earn another 0.5% p.a.
A minimum deposit of $500 is required upon account opening, and a minimum balance of $100 needs to be maintained to enjoy the benefits of the Singlife Account. Returns are not guaranteed and subject to future changes.
Readers considering using the Singlife Account would undoubtedly be interested to know the differences between the Singlife Account and other high-interest accounts. We examine it below.
Singlife Account Is NOT A Bank Account
The first point you should know about the Singlife Account is that it is not a bank savings account.
Instead, it is an insurance savings plan that is capital guaranteed, with the value in the Singlife Account protected up to specified limits by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation.
The account comes with services and features that are typically offered by banks, such as access to balance via the Singlife app and an optional Singlife Debit Card for local and international transactions with no annual and foreign exchange fees. Additionally, while “Grow 0.5% p.a. Bonus Return” is an investment-linked policy, we can withdraw and top up any time without additional charges. Do note that having both the Singlife Debit Card and Grow policy would allow account holders to earn the extra 1.0% p.a on their first 1.0% p.a.
There are no points or cash rebates from using the Singlife Debit Card, but each card transaction will count towards the retrenchment benefit (we will get to that shortly). In addition, while cash withdrawals via the debit card are currently unavailable, account holders can make withdrawals via FAST transfer to their own personal bank account.
As an insurance savings plan, the Singlife Account also comes with a life insurance coverage of up to 105% of the deposit in the event of death or terminal illness. The policy is automatically renewed every year subject to conditions and exclusions, and it will be terminated once the benefit is paid.
|In an event of death or terminal illness||Benefit|
|Before the policy anniversary on which life assured’s age last birthday is 61||Sum of:
– deposit; and
– 5% of deposit or $50,000, whichever is lower
|On or after the policy anniversary on which life assured’s age last birthday is 61||Sum of:
– deposit; and
– 1% of deposit or $50,000, whichever is lower
In addition to the insurance coverage, the Singlife Account comes with a retrenchment benefit.
As long as the account holder is retrenched after the first six months from the account opening and remains unemployed for at least 4 months, the account holder will receive the benefit for a period of three months capped at $10,000, subject to terms and conditions.
The benefit amount is based on the average monthly Singlife Debit Card transaction made over the six months right before the date of retrenchment.
How Singlife Account’s Interest Compares With Other Accounts
The Singlife Account offers a return of up to 1.0% on the first $10,000 (or 2.0% with “Earn, Save, Spend” and “Grow 0.5% p.a. Bonus Return”), and 0.5% for the next $90,000. No returns will be paid for on amounts above $100,000.
While your capital with Singlife Account is guaranteed, the interest returns are not. It is worthwhile to note that the interest rates offered by the major banks on their high-interest accounts may also be subjected to unannounced revision as well.
Here’s a comparison of Singlife Account’s interest rates with three popular high-interest rate accounts.
|Accounts||Rate (P.A.)||Terms and Conditions|
|Singlife Account||Up to 2%||– Initial deposit of $500
– Maintain a minimum balance of $100 to earn returns
– First $10,000 receives 1.0% p.a. (or 2.0% p.a. with “Earn, Save, Spend Campaign”and “Grow 0.5% p.a. Bonus Return”)
– Next $90,000 receives 0.5% p.a.
– No interest above $100,000
|CIMB FastSaver Account||Up to 0.3%||– Initial deposit and minimum balance of $1,000 to earn interest
– First $75,000 receives 0.3% p.a.
– Above $75,000 receives 0.15% p.a.
|UOB Stash Account||Up to 1%||– Initial deposit and minimum balance of $1,000 to avoid fall-below-fee of $2
– First $10,000 receives a base interest of 0.05% p.a.
– Next $30,000 receives 0.30% p.a. (0.05% base interest + 0.25% in bonus interest)
– Next $30,000 receives 0.60% p.a. (0.05% base interest + 0.55% in bonus interest)
– Next $30,000 receives 1.00% p.a. (0.05% base interest + 0.95% in bonus interest)
– $100,000 and above receives a base interest of0.05% p.a.
– To earn the bonus interest, you need to maintain or increase your monthly average balance (MAB), as compared to the previous month
To illustrate the returns one will receive from each account, here’s an example based on a deposit of $100,000 for a year, excluding promotional rates.
Out of the three accounts, the Singlife Account will yield a return of up to $650, while the UOB Stash Account would yield up to $620, followed by CIMB FastSaver’s at $262.5.
While Singlife Account does not pay any interest on amounts above $100,000, trailing behind the other savings accounts in terms of returns, the availability of a debit card and the relatively high returns (for amounts less than $100,000) as compared to the other two high-interest accounts make it a viable option for anyone intending to keep their emergency fund or spare cash without incurring penalties for withdrawals.
Signing Up For The Singlife Account
You need to be between the ages of 18 and 75 years old to apply for a Singlife account. You would also need to have a valid Singapore-registered mobile number and a Singapore residential address.
To sign up for a Singlife Account, you will first be required download the Singlife App and register your details using SingPass MyInfo.
After confirming the details, you can proceed to make a minimum initial deposit of $500 via FAST transfer from any bank account into the Singlife Account, and to make a request for the debit card to be mailed to you within 9 to 12 business days.
This article was originally published on 31 March 2020 and updated to include the latest information. Additional reporting by Jorinda Hsu.
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