Time to count that dough. KELLY SIKKEMA

Guess what—being a Scrooge is cool now. Thrifty is the new sexy. Being cheap is being rich. Can't say we never saw this coming. General equilibrium theory and all that jazz. Every oversaturation has to one day come to a reset, and it's no different with people and their spending habits.

Perhaps learning their lesson from millennials who couldn't afford houses thanks to avocado toast tendencies, Gen Zs are now taking a financial responsibility a lot more seriously than the generation before.

What is 'Loud Budgeting'?

In so many words, Loud Budgeting is a trendy name for the personal finance strategy (if you will) that is all about unabashedly making wise spending decisions. Explained by TikTok-er Lukas Battle, it opposes 2023's 'Quiet Luxury' (please don't make us explain this), and because the rich allegedly hate spending money, following their cue is in fact "more chic, more stylish, more of a flex".

Don't you just love the TikTok generation? Casually, singlehandedly eradicating the negative stigmas surrounding saving so we can finally prioritise and reach financial goals without shame. The "Loud" bit attributes to the communication part of it. Setting honest boundaries and having open dialogues about your newfound relationship with money; basically unapologetically rejecting invites because it costs too much.

Kidding. Besides coming up with alternative plans to uh, financially unaligned hangouts, recommendations include opening high-yield savings account to earn interest, canceling under-utilised credit card subscriptions or renegotiating rates with current providers.

Credit begone! CLAY BANKS

It's a good thing, right?

In local context, this rides on the back of a recent report on minimum household income required amid inflation impact. With latest figures rising by five percent, researchers found that the “reasonable starting point” for a living wage in Singapore was SGD2,990 monthly.

If anyone is feeling the pinch, it's surely in one of the most expensive cities in the world. Throw in the tired trope about being Crazy, Asian, but not rich. And while many particularly of Chinese descent may have had a frugal mindset indoctrinated in us since youth, it has never been a lifestyle to flaunt. So this trend, while eyeroll-worthy in hype, is essentially useful these nine percent GST days.

When done without being extreme about it, we can see how Loud Budgeting will truly benefit us all in the long run. You go, Gen Z.