CPFIS returns disappeared after 11 years?


What are the historical CPFIS returns?

I refer to the article “CPFIS funds down 1.65% on average in first quarter” (Straits Times, Jun 1).

It states that “Unit trusts and investment-linked insurance products (ILPs) included under the Central Provident Fund Investment Scheme (CPFIS) yielded negative returns of 1.65 per cent on average in the first quarter.

For the one-year period ended March this year, however, the overall performance of CPFIS-included funds was positive, posting average returns of 8.32 per cent.

In the three-year period ended March this year, CPFIS-included funds grew 13.09 per cent on average, accounted for by a gain of 13.83 per cent from CPFIS-included unit trusts and 12.75 per cent from CPFIS-included ILPs.”

Why is it that normally only one and 3-year annualised returns are reported in the media? Why is it that the 5, 10, 20-year and from inception annualised returns of the CPFIS are not reported?

In this connection, according to the article “Most members in CPF Investment Scheme made a profit in 2016” (Straits Times, Sep 28, 2017) – “Over the two financial years from Oct 1, 2014, to Sept 30 last year, about 293,000 members made cumulative total profits in excess of the CPF-Ordinary Account interest rate of 2.5 per cent per annum.

About 128,000 members made cumulative total profits equal to or less than the CPF-Ordinary Account interest rate. The remaining 172,000 members made cumulative total losses.”

Statistics disappeared after 11 years?

In this connection, I understand that for the first 11 years of the scheme which started in 1993 – annual statistics were published as to the percentage of CPFIS investors who had realised returns that did not beat the 2.5 per cent interest of the CPF Ordinary Account.

Funds’ performance?

What is the historical annualised return on the CPFIS funds since the inception of the scheme?

Piecemeal selective statistics?

Arguably, why do we seem to be getting piecemeal statistics, without the most important ones in order for us to make more meaningful comparisons, analysis and decisions?

If you tell us the returns of “funds” for this year or the last three years only, without the returns in history – how do we make a meaningful comparison with our investments?

Leong Sze Hian


About the Author

Leong Sze Hian has served as the president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), Hotel Mumbai (associate producer), invited to speak more than 200 times in about 40 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of 2 countries. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.