Weigh the risks of EB-5 citizenship route

Originating in Africa, Humans migrated to the remotest corners of the earth primarily to find food, avoid the threat of deadly predators or the danger from domination by other human species or due to dramatic changes in the climate. There is an intriguing scientific theory that unforced migration is motivated by simple curiosity and boredom, what is often called wanderlust. This is credited to a variation in the human DNA (DRD4-7R) now dubbed the “wanderlust gene”. Present in about 20% of the population, it impacts dopamine levels, increasing the person’s tolerance for risk taking including exploring new territories. Those willing for (or seeking) greener pastures in other countries have a larger capacity for risk taking. But can that innate larger risk taking ability justify staking your life savings in an “risky investment for citizenship” plan like US’s EB-5. Harsh’s article in Business Standard today. Your feedback most welcome.

Appeal to ‘slow mind’ to wean investors off F&O

Can you solve this puzzle : A bat and a ball together cost ₹ 1,100.
The bat costs ₹ 1,000 more than the ball.
How much does the ball cost?

If your answer was ₹ 100, that´s incorrect.
The right answer is ₹ 50.
Nobel Laureate and behavioural economist Daniel Kahneman cites this example in his book, Thinking Fast and Slow, to introduce the concept of the ´fast mind´ (which provides intuitive answers without conscious deliberation), and the ´slow mind´ (which is supposed to deliberate and endorse or reject the fast mind´s intuitive answers).
The fast mind´s immediate answers can be frequently wrong.
The slow mind is lazy and prone to biases.
Yet, with the right training, the slow mind can be tutored to amend the fast mind´s intuitive answers.
So what does this interesting puzzle have to do with weaning Individual Indian investors away from speculating in Futures & Options ? Read Harsh’s article in Business standard to know more..

Index fund or ETFs? Compare total cost

Harsh’s article in Business Standard on how a fixation on expense ratio has led to a preference for exchange traded funds over comparable index funds among some investors. In the case of ETFs the NAV is only of guidance value and the market price paid by investors buying the ETF is higher than the NAV and the investors selling the ETF is lower than the NAV. The difference between market price and the NAV imposes an additional cost. Besides, there is brokerage fee, which amplifies an ETF´s tracking error
Hence the tracking error based on market price is way higher than the tracking error of comparable index funds. The incipient movement towards Fund of Index funds across asset categories has been the inadvertent victim of the hastily introduced tax amendment targeting debt funds in the last budget. Hopefully we should see this corrected in the next full budget and index based FoFs will play a pivotal part in passive investing in the future.

Disclosing conflict of interest builds trust

Regulations require that Investment Advisers fully disclose any conflict of interests they have while advising their clients. Far from being an hindrance, a transparent disclosure of the conflict can assist in building the trust of clients. Disclosure of “no conflict” in situations where investors have inbuilt perceptions of conflicts of interest such as referral to Insurance specialists/law firms also help in building trust. Harsh’s article in Business Standard…

Central agency needed to curb mis selling menace

Whilst newage investors require protection from unregulated finfluencers there is an urgent need for a centralised investor grievance redressal agency that will provide protection for older investors to whom financial products are mis-sold and their grievances fall through the regulatory gaps. First mooted by the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission ( FSLRC) the expert committee appointed by the Supreme Court (in the Hindenburg report matter) has reiterated the recommendation. Harsh’s article in the Business Standard.

Restrictions on foreign spends erode Brand India

The 20% deposit requirement imposed on overseas remittances inhibits all citizens from spending or investing overseas. The sweeping inhibitory measure is supposedly to catch a few wrong doers who abuse the Liberalised Remittance Scheme who anyways could , with a little dilligence, be identified from the mass of data that the department has. Harsh’s article in Business Standard on the long term costs of inhibiting/restricting our ordinary citizens from spending and/or investing overseas and the impact such measures have on our aspiration to be a Super power.

Have realistic expectations from your investments

Clients are always amazed when we tell them that looking at how the investments have fared for them is not the right way to review their continuance or otherwise. Using cricketing analogy Harsh explain why looking at moving long term performance of the investment vis-a-vis its peers is a much better way to review the continuance of any investment – rather than the performance experienced by them. In fact the focus on reviewing investments (reviewing the performance of the selected batsman) takes the focus away from reviewing the performance of the entire plan itself. Harsh’s article in Business Standard.

Debt fund growth option: A smart choice for retirees

Growth scheme of a moderately low risk debt fund allows lower tax payment on the income earned as compared to a bank fixed deposit of like maturity even if the interest rates till maturity are similar. This is due to the inherent tax friendly structure. Besides, the Debt MF allows easier encashment and part encashment facilities with no prepayment penalties. Harsh’s article in Business Standard today provides an interesting analogy of a water tank to explain the inherent structural advantage of the growth scheme. look forward to your comments.

Wealth creation is simple but not easy, requires discipline

“Sleep well, eat healthy and exercise regularly” are the “simple” rules that enable a healthy life. However it is not “easy” to follow these simple rules. Similarly wealth creation has simple rules which require discipline and patience. Most people prefer complex solutions in their search for faster results and it takes a dedicated coach to keep them on the path (pardon this bit of self promotion for our profession). Harsh’s article in Business Standard. Your comments welcome as always..

Searchable database for unclaimed shares needed

Check on this link for the names of any investors who were active in teh stock markets in the 1980s/1990s . The link will provide details if any investor has unclaimed shares or dividends that have been transferred to IEPF. Around 48,000 crores are currently deposited with Investor Education and Protection fund (IEPF). IEPF does not have a functional search facility & investors are left to use private searchable databases.
Once discovered there are long tedious processes to recover the shares/dividends. Whilst action has been initiated by the finance minister to create an integrated portal to make the refund process simpler I make a plea in this article in Business Standard that a transparent searchable database is a must to reduce the mountain of unclaimed assets. comments welcome.

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