DBS leverages open banking (SGFinDex) and AI to intensify focus on financial planning inclusion nationwide

Singapore.07 Dec 2020

In an industry first, all Singapore residents can now use DBS NAV Planner, one of the world’s best financial planning solutions

DBS NAV Planner will harness world’s first public-private open banking initiative SGFinDex to widen reach to all

Singapore, 07 Dec 2020 - DBS today announced bold plans to help all retail customers – regardless of their income level or life stage – improve their financial wellbeing. In an industry first, the bank will harness its cutting-edge AI capabilities and the introduction of SGFinDex, the world’s first public-private open banking initiative, to avail its hyper-personalised financial and retirement planning solution DBS NAV Planner to all Singapore residents. The AI-powered DBS NAV Planner is one of the world’s most advanced digital financial planning solutions and can be accessed by both customers and non-customers alike, via DBS digibanking.

Said DBS CEO Piyush Gupta, “Across the world and in Singapore, the income inequality gap is widening. This is compounded by rapidly aging populations and the pandemic is further exacerbating the situation. We believe there is a very real opportunity to narrow this gap, by helping lower-income groups better manage their money. We recognise that lower-income groups face numerous obstacles to financial and retirement planning and have been building solutions to help all Singapore residents overcome these barriers for several years now. With SGFinDex, we can now accelerate our plans for financial inclusion and scale AI-powered financial planning solutions to millions. DBS NAV Planner’s ability to consolidate finances across the industry, provide hyper-personalised insights and actionable recommendations, can help guide everyone to financial wellness, and ensure they are adequately prepared for retirement.”

The bank has observed that low-income groups tend to be highly dependent on deposit savings, which leaves them vulnerable to inflation, especially during low interest rate environments. They are also disproportionately impacted during crises such as the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) and the current pandemic. A recent DBS study showed lower-income groups constituted about half of all customers who experienced a drop in their salaries, while higher-income earners saw considerably less impact.[1] Participation in financial markets is key to wealth creation, with those able to stay invested during crises often benefiting in the long run. The Dow Jones Industrial Average index[2] for instance, has seen an annual compounded growth rate of 7.55% since the GFC. Yet most low-income groups do not participate in financial markets due to several factors. These include the lack of know-how and relevant insights; the tools and resources to monitor the market; the understanding of their own financials and risk appetite; and the excess savings to invest. Financial institutions across the world have been unable to scale effective solutions widely to large numbers of customers, and fintechs over the years have also sought to fill this gap.

Integrated into DBS digibanking (online and mobile), DBS NAV Planner, one of the world’s most advanced digital financial planning solutions, helps customers track, protect and grow their money while providing personalised and actionable insights every step of the way. These insights are powered by more than 100 AI models that have already delivered more than 30 million financial planning insights to customers this year. (Please refer to the appendix for further details of how the solution works)

Gupta added, “Designed to address a fundamental social issue, DBS NAV Planner has been shown to be effective in turning users’ finances around. With SGFinDex, we are confident that this will be a tremendous value add for Singapore residents, while allowing DBS to build out an important new business in years to come – showing that it is possible to do good and do well.”

Proven effectiveness of DBS NAV Planner

Since its launch in April, DBS NAV Planner has already helped more than 1.8 million customers make sense of their financial data and overcome inertia by empowering them to make better informed decisions with their money. The solution has also since helped more than 400,000 customers to become net savers. Between August to October this year, DBS observed that 8 in 10 new-to-guided investing customers have done so as part of their follow-up on a recommendation provided by DBS NAV Planner. More customers are coming forward to invest not just in cash, but also via their CPF or even SRS accounts, and the number of DBS/POSB customers who topped up their CPF accounts more than doubled this year.

Designed specifically to leverage data-sharing initiatives such as SGFinDex, DBS NAV Planner includes a built-in flexibility where customers can input information of their external holdings to complete their balance sheet. Prior to SGFinDex’s launch, more than 40,000 customers had manually input their external holdings in DBS NAV Planner.

How to access DBS NAV Planner and SGFinDex

All Singapore residents – including non-DBS/POSB customers – can now access SGFinDex through DBS NAV Planner to consolidate their financial data. DBS/POSB customers can log into DBS digibanking (either online or mobile) to access DBS NAV Planner, whereas new-to-bank customers can sign up for a DBS digibanking account in four steps with MyInfo. Only upon customer consent via SingPass authentication will the exchange and consolidation of financial planning data take place. For more information on how to connect to SGFinDex via NAV Planner, visit: https://www.dbs.com.sg/personal/deposits/digital-services/sgfindex/

Click here to view how DBS NAV Planner works.

[1]Lower income groups are defined as those who earn SGD 2,999 and less each month. Source: DBS NAV Financial Health Series, published August 2020.
[2]This index measures the performance of 30 large, public-owned companies trading on both New York Stock exchange and the NASDAQ.


About DBS
DBS is a leading financial services group in Asia with a presence in 18 markets. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, DBS is in the three key Asian axes of growth: Greater China, Southeast Asia and South Asia. The bank's "AA-" and "Aa1" credit ratings are among the highest in the world.

Recognised for its global leadership, DBS has been named “World’s Best Bank” by Euromoney, “Global Bank of the Year” by The Banker and “Best Bank in the World” by Global Finance. The bank is at the forefront of leveraging digital technology to shape the future of banking, having been named “World’s Best Digital Bank” by Euromoney. In addition, DBS has been accorded the “Safest Bank in Asia” award by Global Finance for 12 consecutive years from 2009 to 2020.

DBS provides a full range of services in consumer, SME and corporate banking. As a bank born and bred in Asia, DBS understands the intricacies of doing business in the region’s most dynamic markets. DBS is committed to building lasting relationships with customers, and positively impacting communities through supporting social enterprises, as it banks the Asian way. It has also established a SGD 50 million foundation to strengthen its corporate social responsibility efforts in Singapore and across Asia.

With its extensive network of operations in Asia and emphasis on engaging and empowering its staff, DBS presents exciting career opportunities. The bank acknowledges the passion, commitment and can-do spirit in all of our 29,000 staff, representing over 40 nationalities. For more information, please visit www.dbs.com.