Many Malaysians say not financially prepared for an extended MCO — survey

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KUALA LUMPUR (April 9): Many Malaysians are not financially prepared if the Movement Control Order (MCO) were to be extended, according to a new survey released by the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM).

Generally, more than half of survey respondents (52.6%) said they were most affected when it came to financial savings, whereas 6.2% said they were least affected.

Two-thirds or 71.4% of self-employed respondents said they have sufficient savings for less than one month.

The duration of employee tenure also influences financial savings, of which 69.7% of those who have worked for less than one year stated that their financial savings may only support them for less than one month, the survey showed.

Meanwhile, employers (77.2%) or private employees (82.7%) say they have enough savings for two months.

11.4% of those who have worked for 21-30 years and 11.7% of those who have worked over 30 years say they have sufficient financial savings for four months. This is most apparent for employees in government-linked companies (GLC) and multinational companies (MNCs), the survey showed.

These findings were published by DOSM today in a new special survey on the “Effects of Covid-19 on the Economy and Individual — Round 1”, which surveyed a total of 168,182 respondents aged 15 years and above, via online from March 23 to 31.

In a statement, DOSM said the agriculture and services sectors recorded the highest percentage of job losses compared with other sectors as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.

Almost half or 46.6% of those self-employed also lost their jobs, while an estimated 9 out of 10 individuals are currently working with a lower than usual salary.

The agriculture sector recorded 21.9% in job losses while jobs in the services sector were cut by 15%.

“For the agriculture sector, 33% of workers in the fisheries sub-sector reported job losses and in agriculture and plantation, 21.1%. In the services sector, job losses in the F&B services sub-sector recorded 35.4%, followed by the transport and storage sub-sector with 18.7%,” said chief statistician Datuk Seri Mohd Uzir Mahidin.

The industry sector also recorded 6.7% in job losses, of which 11.8% came from the construction sector, the survey highlighted.

“The findings of this survey will assist the Malaysian government and people in addressing the effects of Covid-19 on the economy and employment. The assessments are based on respondents who participated in the special survey and do not signify the views of all Malaysians. Therefore, it should be interpreted carefully to assess the effects of Covid-19 in Malaysia as it is not the official statistics. However, it can be used to support the current state of matters,” Mohd Uzir said.

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