November 1, 2012

Hwang PRS Launch

HWANG Investment Management Bhd (Hwang IM) has become the first of the eight appointed Private Retirement Scheme (PRS) providers to roll out its PRS products and services.

Hwang PRS Solutions, comprising four funds based on contributors' risk appetite and needs, are targeting guided annual return of between five per cent and 11 per cent.

Even though there is no minimum dividend policy, unlike the minimum 2.5 per cent that the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) offers and the funds are not capital-guaranteed nor protected, Hwang IM is confident that like other funds it manages, the PRS funds would perform just as good.

"The sound principles and good safeguarding policies put in place by the Securities Commission to some extent provides for a viable framework for this scheme to succeed. But like most things in life, nothing is guaranteed," said Hwang IM chief executive officer Teng Chee Wai.

He said as the country's first voluntary retirement scheme, it is only natural that the public gets wary of a scheme that is not capital-guaranteed.

Teng said PRS allows contributors to choose their provider, fund as well as determine the frequency and amount of investment they wish to make.

These options, he said, allow them to determine the level of commitment and speed at which they wish to achieve their targeted sum or financial independence.

"We are offering to the public low-cost PRS solutions that feature zero per cent front-end fees across all fund offerings ... our view is that retirement investing should be simple and low cost without the high initial fees usually associated with unit trust investing," said Teng.

Hwang IM has set an investment sum of RM100 for each fund compared with RM1,000 currently set for most unit trust funds, while subsequent top-ups are set at a minimum of RM50.

The four Hwang PRS funds are the Growth Fund for those below 40, the Moderate Fund for those between 40-50 years of age, Conservative Fund for those above 50 and Syariah Growth Fund.

Contributors to both the conventional and Syariah Growth Funds can be assured of a guided total annual return of nine per cent to 11 per cent, while the Moderate Fund between seven per cent and nine per cent and five per cent to six per cent for the Conservative Fund. (The guided total annual return is based on the real historical returns of Hwang IM's in-house managed funds as at September 30 2012.)

Teng said Hwang IM is optimistic that the funds will be providing good first-year returns to contributors and is targeting RM100 million in three years.

Source: Business Times

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