Nine out of Ten Malaysians Now Saving Monthly According to Visa Study


Visa Study on Financial Literacy Reveals Heightened Awareness of the Need to Save for the Future Among Malaysians


A study by electronic payments company Visa has revealed that about nine out of every ten working Malaysians (87 percent) are currently setting aside funds for savings every month.

This was one of the results of a study on Financial Literacy in Malaysia by payments technology firm Visa1. The study further revealed that most Malaysians do plan their monthly spending with 86 percent of respondents setting a regular monthly budget.  Out of those who plan their monthly budget, 33 percent indicated that they follow it all the time, while another 37 percent admiiting they only follow their budget occasionally and 16 percent saying that they do not usually follow it. Married respondents were also more likely to follow a budget (37 percent) compared to singles (31 percent).

This heightened awareness on the need to save for the future among Malaysians may be one of the main reasons that many Malaysians are confident that they will be financially ready for retirement with 41 percent of respondents stating that they are confident that they will be financially ready by the age of retirement, and only 19 percent saying they would not be ready.

With regards to usage of credit cards, the Visa study also revealed that almost 8 in 10 Malaysians surveyed own a credit card (77 percent), out of which, almost half of them (47 percent) indicate that they usually make full repayments on their monthly credit card bills.

The survey also revealed a number of interesting results regarding credit card ownership:

  • Younger adults (18 to 24 years old) are significant less likely to own a credit card with half of those in this age group not owning a credit card (49 percent) compared to other age groups: 25-34 age group (24 percent not owning a credit card), 35 to 44 age group (16 percent) and 45 to 55 age group (11 percent).
  • Ladies were significantly less likely to own a credit card compared to their male counterparts, with about one in every four females (24 percent) not owning a credit card. In comparison, only seventeen percent of males do not own a credit card.
  • Those with tertiary education were significantly less likely to own a credit card with 38 percent not owning a credit card, while only 17 percent of those without tertiary education did not own any credit card.

With regards to investments, 75 percent of survey respondents said they owned some form of investment,  with the top 3 being unit trusts (49 percent), stocks (29 percent) and mutual funds (23 percent). On insurance policy ownership, 83 percent of respondents said they owned at least one insurance plan, with the most common being life insurance (61 percent), hospital insurance (50 percent) and investment-linked insurance (32 percent). The findings further show that respondents without any tertiary education were significantly more likely to own life insurance (non-tertiary 65 % vs tertiary 38%), hospital insurance (non-tertiary 53% vs tertiary 30%) and investment-linked insurance (non-tertiary 35% vs tertiary 16%)


1 Financial Literacy Study by Visa, Sept. 2017 – Report for Malaysia. Conducted by YouGov on 1,000 Malaysians, aged 18 to 55 years, working full time (30 or more hours per week) to understand the state of financial literacy in Malaysia.


About Visa

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable electronic payments. We operate one of the world's most advanced processing networks — VisaNet — that is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and assured payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit, or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations; however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: pay now with debit, pay ahead of time with prepaid or pay later with credit products. For more information, visit