Singapore Savings Bonds are a special type of Singapore Government Securities for individuals. It is almost risk-free and despite a 10-year term, you can redeem them early in the event you need the money. Hence, the Singapore Savings Bonds can be a great option for growing your emergency fund or for your diversification or retirement plan.
3 Benefits of Singapore Savings Bonds
- Small capital – You can buy the Singapore Savings Bonds with as little as S$500
- Safe – Singapore Savings Bonds are fully backed by the Singapore Government.
- Flexible – Interest increases over the 10-year term but you can always get your full investment amount back with no capital losses
At the beginning of each month, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will announce the interest rates for the entire 10-year term of the month’s Savings Bond issue. These interest rates will be locked-in and you can view them using the Singapore Savings Bonds interest calculator.
If future interest rates turn out to be more attractive, you can redeem your existing savings bonds with no penalty and apply for new ones.
But before you do that, do check whether you would actually be getting higher returns with new savings bonds than with your existing savings bonds, which would be giving you stepped-up interests.
How to buy your first Singapore Savings Bond
1. Prepare your bank and CDP Securities accounts
Before you apply for your Singapore Savings Bonds, you will need:
- A bank account with DBS/POSB, OCBC, or UOB that you want to invest with
- An individual Central Depository (CDP) account linked to the bank account through direct crediting service (DCS)
CDP is the custodian for Savings Bonds and will process applications, interest payments, and redemptions.
2. Apply for Singapore Savings Bonds
There are two ways to apply:
- Via DBS/POSB, OCBC, or UOB ATMs
- Via Internet banking under Singapore Government Securities. If you are using OCBC, you can also use the OCBC mobile application
You will need your CDP account number when you apply. Your investment will be deducted from the bank account linked to your ATM card or Internet banking account.
Apply within this period:
To apply within a given month, you have to do so between 6 p.m. on the first business day and 9 p.m. on the fourth last business day of the month. You can check the Singapore Savings Bonds calendar for these dates.
How much to invest?
The minimum investment per bond is S$500 and the maximum individual holding is S$100,000. If you would like to invest more than S$500, you can increase your investment sum by multiples of S$500 (e.g. S$1,000, S$1,500, etc.).
A non-refundable transaction fee of S$2 will be charged by the bank for every application request.
3. Wait for your Singapore Savings Bonds to be issued
Let’s say you have applied for S$2,000 worth of Singapore Savings Bonds. That doesn’t mean the full amount would be allotted to you.
That’s because there might not be a sufficient amount on offer. When oversubscription happens and you didn’t get the full amount you applied for, you will get a refund of the excess cash by the end of the second last business day of the month.
You will be notified by CDP via mail of the amount of Singapore Savings Bonds allotted to you and they will be issued on the first business day of the following month.
You can always check your holdings online through the CDP Internet service or by calling CDP at 6535 7511.
4. Receive your interest!
You will receive your first interest payment six months after the bond issuance. Interest will be automatically credited to your DCS bank account.
You will receive interest every six months after that, on the first business day of the month – reflected in your CDP statements.
How to redeem your Singapore Savings Bonds
When your bond matures
After your bond’s 10-year term, your principal and the last interest payment will be deposited to your DCS bank account automatically. There will be no transaction fee.
If you want to redeem early
You can redeem your Savings Bonds before they mature and there will be no penalty. However, do note that there will be some lead time to getting your money (see below).
Here’s how to redeem:
- Submit your redemption requests through the DBS/POSB, OCBC or UOB ATM, or via internet banking
- Redeem in multiples of S$500, up to the amount you have invested for each bond. You can redeem more than one bond
- A S$2 transaction fee will apply for every redemption request
The redemption period opens at 6 p.m. on the first business day and closes at 9 p.m. on the fourth last business day of the month. You will receive your redemption proceeds by the end of the second business day of the following month. You cannot amend or cancel redemption requests.