MyPF Cash and Emergency Savings Quiz

2017-06-23T17:27:24+08:00By |Personal Finances, Spending|

How much in cash or emergency savings do you really need?! Find out with this simple 5 questions quiz.

General Recommendations

Cash and emergency savings guidelines generally recommend 6 – 12 months equivalents of expenses. Variations of this advice would be to use 6 – 12 months equivalent of income, or some may advocate as low as 3 months equivalent.

Life isn’t as straightforward as a text-book though. How much in cash and emergency savings you should hold is different for each individual’s needs. Below, we look at 5 important questions that will help you to make this important decision.


Quiz Instructions: For each question, select the closest answer and sum up your total score.


Q1: What stage in life are you in?

  • Dependent on parents/others: 1
  • Working part-time: 5
  • Working full-time: 10
  • Retired: 50

Extra Question: Do you have dependents (a.k.a. little monsters dependent children)?

  • Yes: 20
  • No: 10


Q2: Is your career and income stable?

  • Yes, I am a superstar!: 8
  • Mostly yes. I’m doing ok: 10
  • No, I live in fear of retrenchments, recessions, and evil bosses: 20


Q3: Do you have alternate cash sources?

Alternate cash sources: cash out from your home loan equity, insurance policies, FAMA bank, etc

  • Yes: 10
  • No: 15


Q4: How important is holding cash for you?

  • YES!! It is very important to hold cash [hokkien: ta-po gina bei sai bo lui]: 20
  • Yes it is important: 10
  • Who needs cash?! YOLO!!: 5


Q5: Are you waiting for investment opportunities?

  • Yes (playing with fingers intertwined), I am the type who likes to hold cash, ready to invest when markets collapse and there are bargains: 20
  • No, I invest regularly with the funds that I have: 10
  • No, I don’t invest because investing is dangerous: 20


How did you score?

The amount of cash that you need very much depends on a mixture of your stage in life, financial dependencies, the stability and availability of your income/cash sources, and your perceptions on holding cash whether it is to feel safe or to take advantage of future investment opportunities. Your total score will give you a general indicative level of emergency savings in terms of monthly expenses equivalent. This will allow you to take action to increase (or decrease) your cash and emergency savings.

Total Score Cash/Emergency Savings
49 & below 0.5 months
50 – 54 1 month
55 – 59 1.5 months
60 – 69 3 months
70 – 79 6 months
80 – 84 12 months (1 year)
85 – 89 18 months (1.5 years)
90 – 94 24 months (2 years)
95 – 99 36 months (3 years)
100 & above 60 months (5 years)

Download: Cash and Emergency Savings Quiz (excel version)

Note: E&OE. For general information sharing purposes only. Please refer to a personal finances advisor for more detailed individual analysis.


How much cash do you hold and why?

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