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Malaysia: 3 out of 10 working adults borrowed cash to buy essentials

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PETALING JAYA Three out of 10 Malaysian working adults have had to borrow money to buy essential goods in the past six months, a survey by the Debt Management and Counselling Agency (AKPK) has found.

The survey also found that one out of five working adults did not manage to save money in the last six months, The Star reported.

AKPK CEO Azaddin Ngah Tasir said the majority of those in these categories earned less than RM2,000 (S$660) or were self-employed.

AKPK's inaugural financial behaviour survey report, which took place from January to July, involved more than 3,500 Malaysian working adults.

Mr Azaddin said the survey focused on two groups: the self-employed and those earning below RM2,000 monthly.

"These are the most vulnerable as they are most challenged in terms of financial well-being," he said.

The survey engaged six advisers from public and private institutions of higher learning.

The survey report was launched yesterday by Deputy Prime Minister Wan Azizah Wan Ismail during AKPK'S inaugural Financial Literacy Symposium 2018.

DISMAL LEVELS

"As shown by the survey, the financial well-being of the respondents was at dismal levels.

"Many do not set aside money for emergency needs and medical expenses, and they would not be able to cover three months' expenses if retrenched," said Mr Azaddin.

The survey also found that a high cost of living was the main reason why many working adults were unable to save, reported The Star.

It also found that government employees form the highest percentage of borrowers of personal loans.

In her speech, Dr Wan Azizah said that as of September, there were 13,338 Malaysians who were declared bankrupt.

The symposium was attended by more than 300 participants from the public and private sectors.

WORLD