Latest Stories

Filipinos more savvy about finances, study shows


Filipino consumers have improved their financial quotient (Fin-Q), or financial well-being, as more and more citizens now understand the value of budgeting, retirement planning and saving, a new Citibank research showed.

Nine out of 10 Filipino adults with access to banking services—or those with a bank account or a major credit card—said they make a budget on a monthly basis and most of them (65 percent) know the importance of sticking to their budget.

As they prepare for retirement, 63 percent said they were on track with their retirement savings or had already started to set aside some savings for it.

Citi—which has been running an online poll since 2007 to estimate the financial well-being of consumers across the region—reported Monday that for the second straight year, Filipinos’ overall Fin-Q score surpassed the 50-point mark and scored a record high of 53 out of a possible 100 points.

Although rising from a relatively low base, this record score for the Philippines is well within the 53.2 Fin-Q average across Asia-Pacific as indicated by the study. It also came up from Filipinos’ 52.6-point score in the previous survey.

Before the turnaround two years ago, Filipinos’ Fin-Q level always fell short of the 50-point mark. When Citi launched the annual Fin-Q survey in 2007, for instance, Filipinos scored 47.8 points, which dipped to 46.6 points in 2008 before inching up to 49 in 2009. The last time the country’s Fin-Q score was below 50 was in 2010 at 48.9 points.

Increased awareness


The improved score in the last two years was driven by increased awareness among respondents on the importance of managing their personal finances, owning financial products such as investments and insurance, and having a general optimism on their financial future, Citi said in a statement.

The latest figures suggested that Filipinos were now more conscious of their budget and seemed to be on the right track in preparing for their future. “In fact, it was a record year in terms of their confidence in their insurance coverage, with nearly eight out of 10 saying they owned insurance products or enjoyed income protection,” the bank said.

In the latest survey, respondents were scored on 11 different questions closely related to financial well-being for a maximum possible score of 100. The questionnaire consisted of over 80 questions and covered a range of topics related to making smart financial decisions and having good financial habits. All respondents were over 18 years of age.

“Citi is always on the lookout for opportunities to reach out to a wide range of audiences and go beyond our client base to promote financial literacy. When consumers are engaged in discussions on saving, budgeting and investing, it raises awareness on the importance of being able to make smart financial decisions for their future,” Citi country officer Sanjiv Vohra said.

In December, Citi hosted the 2012 Citi-FT Financial Education Summit in Manila which drew some 300 delegates from over 30 countries to address the urgent need to bridge the financial capability gap in Asia.

Paying off


Citi said the financial literacy efforts seemed to be paying off.  According to the latest survey, building savings topped the financial concerns of Filipinos. It was also found that six out of 10 said they knew a fair bit or knew exactly their current net worth.

The survey was conducted through research firm Big Picture Qual and Quant Research in late 2012 and the results were released this year. The survey covered 3,500 online respondents across seven countries, including the Philippines. Five hundred interviews were conducted in each of the participating countries that included Australia, India, Indonesia, Korea, Singapore and Taiwan.

Optimism was also at a high across the region with 67 percent saying they were somewhat or were very optimistic about their financial future.

“Apart from the encouraging results of this latest survey, we are also seeing how Filipinos are taking a more active role in managing their finances and planning their future. Citi is proud to take part in this initiative and we hope to continue the conversation with consumers through more financial literacy programs this year,” said Vohra.

Originally posted: 3:59 pm | Monday, February 4th, 2013

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: financial quotient , Personal finance , Philippines , survey

  • novaliches

    so many people are promoting mutual fund. this is being heavily promoted for some reasons. educate ourselves to be aware, do not rely on others.   avoid holding an empty bag at the end.

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • Businesswoman allegedly killed by husband, brother-in-law
  • Roxas suspended from golf club for outburst over P5,000 guest fee
  • SC reschedules oath-taking of new lawyers
  • Ex-COA chief seeks bail after arrest for plunder
  • Aquino expects more from new Air Force chief ‘since I know him so well’
  • Sports

  • Guiao fined P100,000 for ‘mongoloid’ comment vs Meralco forward
  • Hawks and Grizzlies revel in home wins
  • Floyd: Manny’s power gone
  • Michael Phelps loses to Lochte in comeback meet
  • Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals
  • Lifestyle

  • ‘Recovered’ Banksy works on display ahead of sale
  • Marinduque: Visiting the ‘palm of the ocean’
  • First at Vatican in 60 years
  • How Jing Monis Salon gave Krissy the pixie
  • Want to be a supermodel? Work on your inner beauty, says Joey Espino
  • Entertainment

  • Paul McCartney to play at Candlestick concert
  • Kristoffer Martin: from thug to gay teen
  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Cris Villonco on play adapted from different medium
  • Business

  • PAL hailed for ban on shark fin cargo
  • BSP to change tint of P100 bill
  • Nielsen sees car buying boom in the Philippines
  • How author of best-seller exposed ‘one percent’ economic elite
  • Bangko Sentral readies new bank lending rules
  • Technology

  • Cloud strength helps Microsoft earnings top Street
  • Vatican announces hashtag for April 27 canonizations
  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • Opinion

  • Corruption not invincible after all
  • Editorial Cartoon, April 25, 2014
  • No deal, Janet
  • Like making Al Capone a witness vs his gang
  • MERS-CoV and mothers
  • Global Nation

  • Plane lands at Bali airport in suspected hijacking—Indonesia air force
  • Obama lands in Seoul as N. Korea nuclear test fears grow
  • Militant protests vs Obama, US set
  • Filipinos second-shortest in Southeast Asia
  • China welcomes PH apology
  • Marketplace