More protection to be offered to wealthy Singapore investors

Added 5th September 2016

Wealthy investors in Singapore may soon be able to choose to be covered by the same protections as retail investors under proposals from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (Mas).

More protection to be offered to wealthy Singapore investors

First announced by the regulator in September 2015, Mas intends to table amendments to the legislation in Parliament by the fourth quarter of 2016, reports Bloomberg.

If passed, the changes would come into force in 2017.

Current framework

Under Singapore’s current law, it is assumed that wealthy (accredited) investors are better informed and have greater means to protect their own interests.

Therefore, banks are exempt from having to provide as much information about financial products as they would to retail investors.

Accredited investors

Currently, an individual with personal assets exceeding S$2m (£1.1m, $1.5m, €1.3m) or an annual income of at least S$300,000 is classified as an accredited investor.

The ‘opt-in’ regime proposed by Mas would require those meeting accredited investor status to make a conscious decision to be treated as such, with the full knowledge of the lower level of regulatory protection afforded to accredited investors.  

Investors opting to be treated as accredited investors would sacrifice the benefits of stronger regulatory safeguards to have easier access to a wider range of complex and risky products. 

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