The sudden shift from hot and humid weather to rainy and humid has been causing a bit of an inconvenience. Suddenly the water coming out of the shower is freezing! And out comes the rainy day gear and outfits. I don’t miss the hot and humid weather though.
For the Chinese, August is ghost month. A time when hungry ghosts with unfinished business roam the earth. The typical belief is that it is unlucky to sign contracts, enter into new relationships (no new bf or gf lol), or spend a lot of money on ghost month which at this time (it varies), runs from 1 to 29 August. Stock market prices are also typically low on ghost month as few people buy shares. Conversely, it is advised that as prices are cheap, it may be a good time to buy shares on the cheap, at the risk of incurring the dreaded “bad luck.” I personally am not Chinese so I don’t strictly subscribe to these pamahiin or superstitious beliefs.
My current net worth is
PhP 3,878,897.41/USD 74,594.18
This is composed of:
Real estate 37.36%
Stocks etc 22.04%
Car value 11.02%
Retirement account 4.55%
Currently contemplating adding to my PERA account this ghost month with the expectation that stock prices will be favorable. I usually fund my PERA account only once a year as there’s a transaction charge of about PhP50 per contribution. You can only fund your PERA account up to PhP100,000.00 per year so I usually shoot for funding in 50 to 100 thousand into my PERA account on a one-time basis every year. This way I limit the number of transactions/contributions every year to only ONE and limit paying the transaction charge to only PhP50.00.
On my PERA account, so far there is still no word on the income tax rebate (in the form of a tax credit certificate [TCC]). So if you’re in it exclusively for the TCC, you may avoid the PERA for now as the government and the banks are still tweeking its terms.
On the other hand, as a mere employee, I’m happy for an alternative retirement plan like PERA. There doesn’t appear to be any job security nowadays with companies going broke or governments being unstable and well, political. Having a PERA account offers you some measure of peace of mind and lets you rest in the knowledge that should sh!t happen, you can always have a pension to turn to, when you turn 60.
Granted, this pension is essentially self-funded.* In my case, it certainly is FULLY self-funded as my employer pays zero counterpart contribution to my fund. But if you start early, and invest in equity funds (there are several PERA-specific UITF funds for you to select, depending on your risk profile and investment horizon), I imagine your pension funds will have time to grow exponentially to provide a realistic pension in the future.
As for FH, I have yet to arrange for his PERA account. We do plan on opening one for him though, sometime next year.
Do you know of any alternative retirement plan in the Philippines?
**The PERA law provides an option for an employer-counterpart, much like how the SSS works. You may actually approach your private sector employer should you wish to take this option.