Revealed: How The Pap Uses The Wage-CPF/HDB-Debt Cycle To Stab Singaporeans In The Back

The PAP Pays You A Wage And Takes 100% Back From You

Finally, let me get to the most important expose of today’s article.

If you look at how much of our wages are forced to be extracted from us to let the government siphon off, Singaporeans actually sacrifice the largest proportion of our wages to the government via CPF, as compared to the other Asian Tigers economies (Chart 46).

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Chart 46

If the government were to take so much away from Singaporeans, you would expect that what the government gives back to Singaporeans would be equally high as well, wouldn’t you?

Now indeed, Singapore has accumulated the highest proportion of the pension reserves, as a proportion of GDP (Chart 47).

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Chart 47

However, when you look at the government expenditure on social security, healthcare and welfare, the PAP spends only 2% of GDP, or the lowest among the Asian Tigers (Chart 48)!

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Chart 48

And as shared previously, our CPF is the one of the least adequate retirement fund in the world (Chart 49, 50, 51)

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Chart 49: Developing Asia’s Pension Systems and Old-Age Income Support

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Chart 50: Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index

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Chart 51: Pensions at a Glance Asia/Pacific 2011

Now, this is where our story gets interesting.

This article is titled how the PAP has used wages, CPF and the HDB to stab Singaporeans in the back.

Let me finally explain.

As I had mentioned, the PAP only pays Singaporeans 42% of the GDP into our wages. Do you know that this 42% is not accidental? They have calculated very carefully to achieve this 42% figure – which they have maintained since 1994.

But importantly, why did the PAP chose not to tell the truth that the average wage share in the 1980s was 43% and not the 41.8% they claim, and that it reached as high as 48% in 1985? Why did the PAP want to pretend to you that wage share was low and even lower than today? What are they trying to hide?

They are trying to hide the deceptive scheme they have created to entrap you.

Here’s how: In 1994, the PAP embarked on a carefully-planned deception scheme to entrap your money. They pushed down the wage share to a low of 42% and has maintained it at that level ever since. But why 42%? (In 2004, they had also pushed it down further to 40%.)

The PAP then increased what Singaporeans have to pay into the CPF (40% in 1994) and then force down the interest on the CPF to 2.5% in 1994. Since 1999, the interest rates have been kept at the drastically low level of 2.5% to 4% and this year, the PAP spiked up the CPF contribution rates to 37% (Chart 52).

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Chart 52

But why 42% wage share? Here’s why: In a survey by The Straits Times, it was shown that for more than two-thirds of middle-class Singaporeans, we have enough to buy only what we “need” but we won’t have anymore to pay for anything else (Chart 53).

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Chart 53

If you understand the significance of this, from 1994, the PAP has carefully calculated that if they pay Singaporeans a wage share of 42%, then extract about 40% of this wage into CPF, whatever is left – or 60% of this wage – would just be enough for you to pay for essential services. In short, they had carefully calibrated the 42% wage share, knowing this is all you need to just barely survive. You see, what’s the point of giving you more when it means that they would have lesser?

This 42% is thus not accidental – it’s a wage given to you so that they can then take one-half back from your CPF and the other half from you paying them for essential services (Chart 54).

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Chart 54

So, why did the PAP wanted to hide the fact that at one point, wage share was as high as 48%. If you knew that you could earn more, you would see through their plot and realise that they were purposely cutting down your wages. And when you put two and two together, you would realise that they are cutting down your wages so that they could earn more from what they save from having to pay you.

As I had explained, the PAP controls the economy and they have monopolised all the essential services in Singapore – housing, public transport, education, healthcare, telecommunications, public utilities and estate management (almost except for the Worker’s Party’s bastion) (Chart 55).

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Chart 55

And as I had mentioned, because the PAP owns all these essential services, they get to jack up the prices of everything at their whims and fancies. This is why they had the guts to jack up transport fares even as Singaporeans were vehemently against it, this is why the PAP had the audacity to increase subscription for the FIFA World Cup by 600% since 2006 because they get to – because they think: who’s going to stop them?

As such, what this means is that after the PAP has extracted the 38% of your wage (into 37% CPF and 1% tax), they then make you pay the rest of the 62% of your wage into all these essential services which are owned by them. And since most Singaporeans have just enough to pay for these “needs”, that means all the 62% of our wages go back to paying the PAP.

But you can be sure this taking back of the 62% of your wage isn’t accidental. Since they know that you would have 62% of your wage left and since they have monopolised all the essential services, they would know how much to push prices up and charge you a price which would just nicely take back this 62% of your wage from you.

You see what the PAP is doing? – Pay you a wage, then take everything back.

Do you see how this sinister this is? Up until 1985, the wage share of Singaporeans were growing such that Singaporeans were earning higher and higher wages, so that we had higher purchasing powers.

But since 1994, everything changed – the PAP created this plan to cut down on Singaporeans, such that they pay us a 42% wage share, take back 38% in tax and CPF, then take back the rest of the 62% via the monopolies they own (Chart 56).

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Chart 56

If you can understand this, you can expect to know why the wage share is maintained at 42% and why they had to make sure the GDP keeps growing. Their whole entrapment plan is most likely pegged to this. Year-on-year, you have to increase people’s wages to give them an illusion that they are earning more, especially since you also want to increase prices. But if you are only willing to pay them 42%, you have to make sure that the GDP grows so that you can increase their wages but still only pay 42% – no loss on your side. You see how it works, and how they are only working to maintain this entrapment model? Now, do you know why the PAP will never implement a minimum wage? A minimum wage would completely destroy this entrapment scheme which they have so carefully built.

Now, do you also know why personal consumption in Singapore has been dropping and dropping (Chart 57)? The PAP has never meant for you to be able to consume. You were only meant to work, so that they can give you a wage and take back 100% of your wage.

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Chart 57

The PAP Created A Permanent 30% Underclass To Disempower Them

But do you know that for the poor, this is even worse?

As I had estimated, by last year, there were 28% of Singaporeans living in poverty (Chart 58).

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Chart 58

And as Prof Tilak Abeysinghe had highlighted, for this “bottom 30 per cent household (in Singapore) are spending more than what they are earning”, at “105 per cent to 151 per cent of their income last year” (Chart 59).

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Chart 59

What this means is that for the 30% low-income Singaporeans who are living in poverty, of the wage that they are given, they have to pay 37% into CPF. Like the rest of Singaporeans, they have to pay the rest of the 63% of their wages back to the PAP for essential services. But because they have been paid wages which are not even enough, they have no choice but to spend 105% to 151% of their incomes. This means that they would go into a debt of between 5% and 51% (Chart 60).

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Chart 60

It’s really disgusting – the PAP have such disregard for the poor that they believe it decent enough to pay the poor a wage that is not even enough to sustain a basic living. Then, they make the poor beg for the rest of the money they don’t have but still have to spend. Some social scientists would explain to you that this purposeful plan to make the poor beg is to entrap them in a disempowered mentality that would ensure that they continue to be (over)-reliant on the PAP. The plan to create a 30% poverty class is thus also not accidental – is this the threshold that they have calculated to disempower to protect their votes (Chart 61)?

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Chart 61

Now, do you also understand why the PAP doesn’t want to define a poverty level? If they had to define a poverty line, you would know very clearly where they drew the line for their entrapment plan of the poor and they cannot afford you knowing this.

But so, the poorest 30% in Singapore live in debt and this debt would need to be paid, right? Now, let’s assume the government pays for this debt. But as you had seen above, the PAP only spends 2% of GDP back for Singaporeans – in fact, not only is this the lowest among the Asian tigers, it is also the lowest among the high-income countries.

But here’s where things start getting even more disgusting. To cut it short, the PAP pays nothing.

When Singaporeans say the PAP makes us “Pay And Pay”, we might know it’s true but we might not know why.

Leong Sze Hian has written many times about how the PAP doesn’t spend a single cent on healthcare, CPF and HDB.

Recently, he also estimated that last year, the PAP had collected $10.8 billion via our Medisave. However, they only returned $9.76 billion back to us for healthcare subsidies and Medisave and MediShield payouts. What this means is that the PAP is collecting more from our Medisave than necessary to “subsidise” for our healthcare. Now, mind you, the PAP also collects taxes from us which is supposed to provide for the subsidies on our healthcare as well. And if the government is already collecting enough Medisave to pay for everything for our healthcare, then why are we still paying taxes (Chart 62)?

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Chart 62

Not only that, do you know the PAP has accumulated $66 billion inside the Medisave but this amount is 16 times higher than the $4 billion that the PAP had spent on health in 2011 (Chart 63). Why on earth would you need to siphon off 16 years of health expenditure from Singaporeans into the Medisave?

But do you know what this means? This means that the government is making us double-pay to them.

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Chart 63

This doesn’t happen only for healthcare. As I had written before, Singaporeans pay more than enough via transport fares and non-fare revenue to fully fund the operating expenses of the transport companies – we pay them 13% more than what is necessary for them to run annually (Chart 64). Yet, however, we are also paying taxes to the PAP which is supposed to subsidise for our public transport. And if Singaporeans are already fully funding SBS Transit and SMRT’s operations, then why do we even need to pay taxes?

Again, you can see that for public transport, we are paying made to pay double to the PAP.

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Chart 64

In fact, Leong Sze Hian had also shown that NUS and NTU had earned a surplus of $451 million. This would be enough to fully pay for all Singaporean university students and allow all of us to receive free education. Instead, the PAP would rather give $351 million to foreign students to study in Singapore (Chart 65) while giving Singaporeans the least scholarships in the world – only 6% and force Singaporeans to pay the highest tuition fees in the world (after factoring for the tuition fee increase this year).

Again, you can see that what Singaporeans pay is more than twice over what is needed for our education – we pay enough for the universities to accumulate enough surplus to give us back this money to allow us to have free education.

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Chart 65

So, back to the question, for the 30% low- and lower-middle-income Singaporeans, they have to spend 5% to 51% more of their income which they do not have. The PAP provides “subsidies” for them, but none of this money comes from the PAP. The PAP pays nothing.

In fact, the PAP makes Singaporeans pay for ourselves – by making us double-pay. So, for all the essential services in Singapore, the PAP has already created a devious scheme to make us pay twice of what we need, so that if they need to redistribute to lower-income Singaporeans, all they need to do is take from the double-paying that we have given to them and save the rest (Chart 66).

They pay nothing.

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Chart 66

This is what I term the Double-Payment Trickery.

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Chart 67

Now, do you know why Singapore is ranked the 5th easiest place in the world “where politically connected businessmen are most likely to prosper” (Chart 68)? If you are connected to the PAP, they will help you get rich. If you are not, you will have to fight tooth and nail to survive.

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Chart 68

Isn’t this disgusting?

But I am still not done revealing this double-crossing scheme to you.

There is still more to shock you.

How The PAP Takes Your CPF Back

So, you might think – OK, let the PAP take my wage then. Cut me down, but I still have my CPF. How wrong you are.

As I had mentioned in the previous article, of your CPF, the PAP has already concocted a devious scheme to also take back almost all of your CPF from you.

The PAP has already calculated how much you would be able to put into the CPF and accumulate. From there, they had then told you that you could use part of it to buy a flat. They had decided how much a flat should cost so that they could extract the bulk of your CPF out for the flat, then they had told you that because you had borrowed this part of your CPF out for the housing mortgage, you need to pay the lost “accrued” interest back to them – this “lost accrued interest” is CPF that you lose unless you pay it back to them. From whatever is left, they have instituted a “CPF Minimum Sum” and which whatever is left inside the CPF won’t meet this minimum sum anyway, so that at 55, you won’t be able to withdraw any of the CPF out at all (Chart 69).

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Chart 69

This also means that they had calculated very carefully how much interest to pay on your CPF, so that with whatever you contribute and earn, this plan would just nicely allow them to take everything back.

The 37% CPF contribution rate and the 2.5% to 4% interest rates are not accidental. The PAP has calculated it very carefully so that they know how how much they need to extract from your wage to the CPF, how much to let your CPF earn, so that they can take everything back.

As Leong Sze Hian had estimated, only 1 in 8 Singaporeans can meet the CPF Minimum Sum which means that nearly 90% of Singaporeans are not able to take out the money we have put into the CPF (Chart 70).

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Chart 70

And when did all these happen? In 1994, the PAP increased the CPF contribution rates to a high of 40%, then paid Singaporeans the lowest ever interest rates on the CPF, and which has been maintained ever since 1999. Then in 1995, the PAP also spiked up the CPF Minimum Sum, making it even harder for Singaporeans to withdraw our CPF at 55. Also in 1994, the PAP allowed CPF to be used for resale flats, where the increased speculation of prices upwards for resale flats further increased the transfer of monies into the HDB and CPF banks (Chart 71).

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Chart 71

So, make you pay the most (CPF), give you back the least (interest), increase the prices of everything (HDB flats) then make you pay back everything. Smart?

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is the Wage-CPF-HDB Trinity.

But wait, there’s more

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Chart 72

Page 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

49 comments

  1. Raymond Lim

    Very well presented. This is indeed the truth that many daft Singaporeans are refusing to see all along. I am going to share this with all my family and friends. I am going to take it upon myself to educate them to not vote for PAP come 2016. Say no to PAP.

  2. John Koh

    So not voting PAP in? Will those charts reverse their trends? By the way, you may not even have any trends to chart! We’ll be charting trends for basic needs and poverty. Then you’ll die comparing them with Norway.

    • Ace

      Some people just don’t know what their priority is. Suppose you had been kidnapped, do you want to escape from the kidnappers first or are you worried that after you escape, will someone else kidnap you? Let’s deal with one thing at a time and cross the bridge when we come to it.

    • joe doe

      I agree with Ace. Don’t be a wussy, John. You don’t have a crystal ball or 20/20 hindsight, so you are not in a position to foretell the unknown. First thing first -> get rid of PAP.

  3. eric

    So according to Roy, a ‘low wage’ worker should earn $3k. The auntie who sweeps our void deck should earn 3k from according to Roy earns 800 now.

    A median wage worker who earn 3k now should earn 6k. So the will university grads not demand more?

    If a low wage worker can earn 3k, will prices remain the same? Will a plate of chicken rice at a hawker center still cost $2.50?

    • Aye

      Hello Eric, can I know your Facebook name? Mind to share with us? I also want to know whether you are certified economist.

      Singapore and other countries have beggars. BUT I see so many poor elderly collecting scrap materials in rich Singapore. This situation does not appear in other countries. What can the new PAP help them?

    • Simple man

      Firstly, wage is only one component of total cost.
      Secondly, if wages of the low and median wage worker is doubled or tripled, do you think it is a problem if prices of food in a hawker centre is double of what it is now?

      The cost of living will certainly be higher but lower in proportion to increase in wages meaning that we will have a better quality of life. Simple enough to understand?

      • joe doe

        Yes, this is simple logic. I hope eric don’t carry the balls to far. Your credibility sucks, eric.

      • Roy Ngerng

        A research has already shown that a 10% increase in wages will only result in a 0.4% increase in general prices.

        Let me just give you the simple reality – in Norway, wages are 3 to 5 times higher but grocery prices are similar, and housing and cars are cheaper.

        So your “fallacy” is illogical.

    • Sgcynic

      Wow Eric, the first brilliant question I ever heard from you!

      “If a low wage worker can earn 3k, will prices remain the same? Will a plate of chicken rice at a hawker center still cost $2.50?”

      I really don’t know. When rentals can increase by 50% from $8k to $12k, making low wage workers progressively earn wages down to $500 per month also not enough. What do you think? Heh

      • Sgcynic

        Still have lah. Just need to take a $2.50 bus-MRT-bus trip with seamless transfer to enjoy.

  4. eric

    Your article is indeed eye-opener! There will be worms inside PAP cans and skeletons inside PAP wardrobes.

    PAP has already cheated our feelings, robbing our hard earned money because of CPF increased minimum sum and increased withdrawal age. HDB took advantage of CPF loan interest to rob our hard earned money.

    CPF loan should not have interest. Why is PAP so greedy and selfish?

    Shame on PAP, Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching! Vote PAP out in 2016!

    Fuck PAP off!

  5. Simple man

    In addition. CPF Life means that they can drag out the payout of CPF by another 20 years (assuming life expectancy is 85 years) and pay very little residue to your beneficiary. Why they want to do this is simply because the returns on the use of your CPF is much higher that the borrowing cost from us.

    So why do you think they have now come up with compulsory MediSave Life?

    You get screwed from birth till death, right, left and centre. This is worse than a Ponzi scheme.
    In a Ponzi scheme, you have the option to get out while you are still alive. Here, your compulsory Ponzi membership expires only when you die.

  6. anonymous

    Singaporeans live in an invisible slave matrix where they can’t see, hear, smell, or touch. Worse, they are brainwashed in schools to support the PAP from young. Thanks to internet everything is exposed, its up to Singaporeans to break free for themselves.

  7. L(iving) H(ell) L(ord)

    Those peoples whom involved in inventing this systems (past & present, directly or indirectly), must have deep in their stone heart, acknowledged there is truth in this article.

  8. Raymond Lim

    My blood boils when I read part 2. It is indeed an eye-opener as others have said. Thanks for compiling all these facts into very easy to digest charts and exposing the lies that PAP has been propagating all these years. A really well researched article.

  9. Calvin

    I have been following your blog for a while and not only I have understood what has been going on but also to feel the effects of it. Not only are the rich getting richer, but they are also getting greedier. Look at how many honest businesses were forced to shutdown due to the exorbitant increase in rent and the inability to hire staffs due to wages and quotas. The standard of essential services like public transport and telecommunications here are so poor and we often hear praises of them being world class, and such praises really makes my blood boil.

    Singapore needs a change. And the change needs to come from each and everyone of us.

  10. anonymous

    It makes sense now why they build casino and locals are deterred from entering. its all about lining their pockets.

  11. Raymond Huang

    I have followed your blog through Tremeritus for some time. I also think that there are a lot of people who still think that perhaps we should change the leader or have a coalition and everything will be solved. It does not work that way.
    There is no option but to aim to remove the ruling party altogether so that Singaporeans can be self-governing again.
    Also we cannot let the ruling party choose who they prefer to be the opposition party. That is for the people to decide. So any change in leadership or succession planning that is “underway” is really meant for the ruling party alone–not for Singapore.
    Singaporeans should keep that in mind.

  12. Richard Charles

    Roy, why don’t you expose the truths in the main media such as the press or STOMP. Best still if BBC or CNN can report it to the whole world the PRO ang mo Singapore government will have to change to save face. Otherwise, do you really think the PAP will let us bring them down by just mere voting? Remember, all those in power are afraid to lose it & they will do anything to keep it.

      • Calson Cheng

        Hey there. Malaysian here.

        You have written a fantastic article.

        A true eye opener for an outsider like myself.

        All the best in liberating your country from your corrupt government. We’ll also do our best to remove our own.

        Peace.

      • Roy Ngerng

        Thank you, Calson, may both Malaysia and Singapore work towards a government and society which will enshrine equality and the protection of their peoples and bring our region towards a renewed peace, prosperity and equality and the Nordic region had been able to achieve.

  13. S128

    Just a factual clarification on the accrued interest. See http://mycpf.cpf.gov.sg/CPF/my-cpf/buy-house/BH7.htm:

    If you sell your HDB flat, you need to refund the principal amount you had earlier withdrawn for the purchase of the flat, including the accrued interest, to your CPF account. This interest is the amount you would have earned, had the savings not been taken out.

    If you are aged 55 and above when you sell your flat, the CPF refunds will be used to top up your Retirement Account up to your cohort Minimum Sum and your Medisave Account up to the current Medisave Minimum Sum. Any excess CPF refunds will be paid to you within 5 working days from the crediting of the refunds to your CPF account.”

    As CPF account holder is required to refund the accrued interest to his CPF account (and not another party), and excess CPF refunds could be withdrawn at age 55 years and above, the CPF account holder would effectively not “lose” the accrued interest he refunded isn’t it? What the account holder effectively lost is the interest he would have earned had he not withdrawn the money for purchase of the HDB flat.

    • Roy Ngerng

      No.

      (1) This interest should be paid by the government in the first place.

      (2) If you don’t pay back the accrued interest, whatever you have inside would be eaten up. If you have to use cash in hand to pay back the accrued interest, this is money lost in cash which you could have used for something else.

      (3) In the first place, the government gives a low 2.5% interest – proven to be the lowest in the world – on the CPF and second, the government jacks up the prices of HDB flats, which cause us to lose our CPF.

      It’s because of the poor interest rates and unjust increase in flat prices that cause us to lose our CPF.

      If the government is sincere, return the interest that that use our CPF to earn – they taken our CPF to earn up to 16% interest in Temasek Holdings but return us only 2.5%.

      Effecticely, we’ve been robbed of our returns.

      • Chin Boey Song

        Hi Roy,
        Thanks for sharing what I believe, many ordinary folks out there still do not know what the CPF “Acrued Interest” means and how its mechanism actually works…

        Your sharing will live on…

  14. Daybit

    You got it wrong la

    Why CPF pay us interest? Simply because we contribute into the fund and the Government uses the fund for investment. That is why we earn interest from our CPF savings.

    when we withdraw the money from CPF for our flats and $$$ is not available for the government to invest. So why the government should pay the interest?

    You want CPF to pay us a higher interest ah?
    HDB loan is marked at 0.1% above the CPF interest rate hor. If the interest if CPF interest is 5% and HDB loan is 5.1%. What will happen to our loan repayment??

    During the 80s, flats were very cheap – a 4 room flat was around $40K. If I bought a flat then and sell it today, if I only return $40K to the CPF. WIll it be enough for retirement?

    Be realistic.

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  16. chris

    It woud be ridiculous to pay the CPF accrued interest, even though it is a tool for money creation.
    Was told many years ago that the lien would simply expire when one retire or pass away. It can’t be paid if your property is not sold and in any case they have to return you the cpf monies after retirement or death. Question is what happens if it is not sold, does the cpf lien carry on indefinitely? Good job bringing it up as I couldn’t get an answer on this.
    Your other points are valid too.

    • chris

      CPF site says that if sold, transferred, etc it need to be paid even after 55yo and it goes into the retirement a/c to be distributed back to you in bits.
      Don’t touch the cpf!

  17. chris

    This is just preliminary. All those points about HDB interest rates, etc are all irrelevant and can be solved.
    Rules are made by man.

  18. Dan

    Can this be a good strategy: After redemption of my bank housing loan, i should then pay CPF (using own cash) all monies utilised for HDB plus accrued interest to prevent compounded growth of accrued interest? In this way, government at least will need to pay me 2.5% interest. Am i correct?

    • Dan

      I mean we should not wait until the sale of HDB flat to repay CPF the monies utilised for HDB plus accrued interest. If the sales of HDB is 30-50 years as you indicated, i actually run into a snowball growth of accrued interest. If this is true, i better act fast to cover the ‘hole’ after completing bank loan. Thanks.

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