EPF contributions up 10% to RM780b as at June

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on September 5, 2018.
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KUALA LUMPUR: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) recorded a 9.55% growth in total accumulated members’ contributions to RM780.07 billion as at June, from RM712.04 billion a year earlier.

This was also 1.5% higher compared with the total contributions of RM768.51 billion as of December last year, and 44.8% higher compared with the total contributions of RM538.63 billion as of December 2013, the retirement savings fund said in a statement yesterday.

It said it registered a 9.99% increase in contributions in the second quarter to RM18.17 billion, compared with RM16.52 billion in the same quarter last year.

Meanwhile, the number of EPF members as at end June totalled 13,996,515, of whom 7,213,774 were active contributors, with 115,125 newly registered members.

The second quarter also saw a slight drop of 2.57% in the number of newly registered employers to 14,568, from 14,952 in the same quarter last year, bringing the total number as at end June to 499,321.

On the withdrawals front, the number of approved applications for all withdrawals increased 4.87% to 598,919 in the second quarter, from 571,130 in the second quarter of 2017. Total withdrawals rose to RM12.65 billion from RM12.48 billion.

The total number of approved applications for Age 55 Full Withdrawal in the second quarter dropped 50.45% to 20,769 (RM1.3 billion) from 41,914 (RM2.51 billion) in the corresponding quarter in 2017. Approved applications for Age 60 Full Withdrawal recorded a slight increase of 8.97% to 15,554 (RM291.32 million) from 14,273 (RM366.20 million).

Meanwhile, the EPF reported a marked increase in the number of applications for flexible withdrawal compared with full withdrawal, with a 48.65% increase in the approved applications for Age 55 Flexible Withdrawal to 67,969 from 45,723 in the second quarter of 2017. The total amount withdrawn rose to RM2.92 billion from RM1.78 billion.

Approved applications for Age 60 Flexible Withdrawal, meanwhile, recorded a 43.16% increase to 40,276 (RM861.3 million) from 28,133 (RM637.61 million).

EPF deputy chief executive officer (operations) Datuk Mohd Naim Daruwish said the fund is pleased that the number of flexible withdrawals is increasing steadily every quarter.

“This reveals members’ growing preference to retain part of their savings with the EPF, in order to continue receiving dividends on the balance in their account.

“There are several options under the Flexible Withdrawal and we strongly encourage members who have reached age 55 or 60 to seek free advice from our retirement advisory service to understand the options that suit their financial position and needs before deciding on which type of withdrawal to make,” he said.