Filipinos have a different concept of financial management. Many are content with the idea of “isang kahig, isang tuka” or only getting enough to carry them over before the next payday. In short, most Filipinos only prepare for the short-term with a complete disregard for their long-term financial life.
Arguably, most of us can’t increase our income, save enough money, prepare for retirement, or plan for financial security.
These are the Filipino money attitudes that prevent most of us from achieving the financial life we all dream of:
“Bahala Na” Attitude
According to the financial inclusion survey conducted by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, 86 percent of Filipinos do not have bank accounts. The explanation is that they have insufficient capital to hold one or they don’t trust banks.
Because of the lack of financial discipline or the “bahala na” mindset of Filipinos, most of us don’t make enough effort to increase our income and reduce our expenditures, which could significantly lead to successfully set aside money for our future.
“Alam Ko Na Yan” Attitude
According to the S&P Global Financial Literacy survey, only 25 percent of Filipinos are financially literate. To put it simply, only one out of four adults in the Philippines are aware of the financial options that they have available.
Aside from being unaware of the financial options available to most of us, Filipinos are also known for our “Alam Ko Na Yan” attitude, which prevents us from deepening our knowledge of a particular subject, particularly the things we need to learn about our money. This attitude also promotes misconceptions about the options we have about the financial tools and methods around us.
“Saka Na Lang” Attitude
The Manulife Investor Sentiment Index (MISI) survey results showed that Filipinos have Asia’s lowest retirement savings. Filipino investors only have a personal income equivalent to 3.6 months set aside for their retirement. Asian investors have ample retirement savings for 2.9 years on average.
The “Saka Na Lang” or Filipinos’ procrastination attitude prevents most of us from making the most of setting up a concrete financial plan that involves budgeting, saving, investing, and ensuring our future as soon as possible. This attitude results in Filipinos trying to play a catch-up game when they realize that planning for their life goals and retirement is almost too late for them.
These bad attitudes regarding money prevent us from achieving the financial life that we all deserve. It puts us in a position where we are constantly working hard, without showing anything for it. By avoiding these attitudes towards money, we can give ourselves the opportunity we owe ourselves to manage our finances and to plan effectively for our future.
Opinion by Alfred Cardenas, TFT Media Founder & CEO