The number of Personal Equity and Retirement Account (PERA) contributors almost tripled two years after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) launched the Digital PERA on Sept 8, 2020.
PERA contributors increased to 4,892 on Sept 8, from 1,684 recorded two years prior.
The number of PERA investors rose along with total PERA funds, as total PERA contributions increased by 106 percent to PHP 289.82 million as of Sept 8 from PHP140.76 million recorded during the same period in 2020.
Contributions from Filipino employees represented 67.43 percent of said PERA contributions or PHP195.42 million. The remainder of the contributions came from overseas Filipino workers and self-employed individuals.
The Digital PERA is an online one-stop shop where investors can conveniently open an account, browse various PERA products, monitor their PERA accounts, and settle transactions via InstaPay and PESONet.
Created under Republic Act No. 9505, PERA is a voluntary retirement savings program that supplements state-based pension plans (i.e., from Social Security System and Government Service Insurance System), and employer-sponsored retirement plans. The BSP introduced PERA in 2016 with support from the financial industry.
The BSP encourages Filipinos to take full advantage of the benefits offered under PERA, including the exemption of PERA earnings from taxes on final withholding, capital gains, and regular income.
PERA contributors are also entitled to a five percent tax credit on contributions for the year that can be used to pay national income tax liabilities. Moreover, qualified PERA withdrawals are not subject to taxes.