Different Charges on Share Trading

Different Charges on Share Trading Explained- Brokerage, STT & More

Different Charges on Share Trading Explained. Brokerage, STT, DP & More: There are a number of charges and taxes involved while trading in India i.e. buying or selling of shares. Some of them are quite popular like Brokerage Charge & GST, while there are many others that the traders and investors are not aware of. In this post, I am going to explain all types of different charges on share trading. Some common ones are brokerage charges, Security transaction charges (STT), stamp duty, etc.

Anyways, before we start discussing them, let us spend a few minutes to learn a few basics things that you need to know first. So, be with me for the next 10-12 minutes to understand the explanation of all the different charges on share trading. Let’s get started.

1. Intraday Trading and Delivery

A lot many beginners trades in stocks and confuse it by investing or delivery. However, both of them are really different:

  1. Intraday Trading: When you buy & sell a share on the same day, then it’s called Intraday trading. For example, you bought a share in the morning and sold it before the market closes on the same day, then it will be considered as an intraday
  2. Delivery Trading: On contrary to Intraday, when you buy a share and hold it for at least one day, then it’s called a delivery. For example, you bought a share today and sold it after three days (or any day but today) then it will be considered as a delivery. Here you can sell the stock tomorrow, or the day after that, or a week later, a year later or 20 years later.

 2. Full-Service Brokers and Discount Brokers:

  1. Full-Service brokers: These are the traditional brokers who offer full-service trading services in stocks, commodities, currencies, mutual funds, etc along with research and advisory, portfolio and asset management, banking all in one account. For example, ICICI Direct, Kotak Securities. HDFC securities, etc.
  2. Discount brokers: These are those budget brokers who offer high speed and the state-of-the-art execution platform for trading in stocks, commodities and currency derivatives. They charge a reduced commission (flat price) and do not provide trading advice. For example, Zerodha, 5Paisa, Angel Broking, Trade Smart Online, etc.

Also read: 8 Best Discount Brokers in India – Stockbrokers List 2020

In general, a full-service broker charges a brokerage between 0.03% – 0.60% of the transaction volume while trading in stocks. On the other hand, the discount brokers charge a flat fee (fixed rate of Rs 10 or Rs 20 per trade) on intraday. The majority of discount brokers also do not charge any fee on delivery trading.

It is important to note that you have to pay a brokerage charge on both sides of trading i.e. while buying a share and selling a share.  Let’s take an example to understand the brokerage charge better.

Suppose there is a brokerage firm called – ABC. Now, this broker charges a brokerage fee of 0.275% on intraday trading and 0.55% on delivery trading. The total charges on both tradings can be given as-

 Intraday TradingDelivery Trading
Brokerage0.275% of total turnover0.55% of total turnover
TurnoverIf you buy 100 stocks at Rs 120 and sell at Rs 125, total turnover is (120*100+ 125*100=) Rs 24,500If you buy 100 stocks at Rs 120 and sell at Rs 125, total turnover is (120*100+ 125*100=) Rs 24,500
Total Brokerage CostTotal brokerage charge on Intraday trading (for both buying and selling) = 24,500 * 0.00275 = Rs 67.38Total brokerage charge on Delivery (for both buying and selling) = 24,500 * 0.0055 = Rs 134.75

As the competition among the brokers is continuously increasing, these brokerage charges offered by the different brokers are also decreasing. For example, the discount brokers like Zerodha offers a flat fee of Rs 20 or 0.01% on Intraday trading (whichever is lower) and Delivery investments are FREE. Therefore, for the above table, assuming the same scenario, the person would be paying only Rs 2.45 in Intraday Trading and Zero Brokerage on Delivery, if he prefers Zerodha as its broker.

Now, apart from brokerage charges, there are also an additional couple of charges and taxes to be paid while share trading. As already mentioned earlier, some of them are Security transaction tax, service tax, stamps duty, transaction charges, SEBI turnover charges, depository participant (DP) charges, and also capital gain tax (which you’ve to pay at the end of the financial year but not while transacting).

Let’s understand these other different charges on share trading and taxes involved first. Further, we will also discuss an example at the end of this post to understand the charges and taxes involved better.

Different Charges on Share Trading

– Security Transaction Tax (STT)

  1. Apart from brokerage, this is the second biggest charge involved while trading in stocks.
  2. For delivery trading, STT is charged on both sides (buy & sell) of transactions and is equal to 0.1% of the total transaction price (on each side of trading).
  3. For intraday and derivate trading (futures and options), STT is charged only when you sell the stock. For intraday, the STT charge is 0.025% of the total transaction price while selling.
  4. For equity Futures, the STT is equal to 0.01% on the sell-side. On the other hand, for equity options trading, STT is equal to 0.05% on sell-side (on premium).

– Stamp Duty:

The stamp duty is charged by the state government. However, this charge is not similar across all the states in India. Different states charge different stamp duty. Here are the stamp duty charged by a few of the big Indian states:

StateIntraday EquityDelivery EquityFutures EquityOptions Equity
Maharashtra0.002%0.010%0.002%0.002%
Delhi0.002%0.010%0.002%0.002%
Gujarat0.002%0.010%0.002%0.002%
Karnataka0.003%0.003%0.003%0.003%
Tamil Nadu0.006%0.006%0.006%0.006%
West Bengal0.002%0.010%0.002%0.002%

Stamp duty is charged on both sides of transactions while trading ( i.e. buying & selling) and hence are charged on the total turnover.

– Transaction Charges

  1. The transaction charges is charged by the stock exchanges and that too on both sides of the trading.  This charge is the same for intraday & delivery trading.
  2. National stock exchange (NSE) charges a fee of 0.00325% of the total turnover as Transaction charges on Equity and Delivery Trading. On the other hand, Bombay stock exchange (BSE) charges a fee of 0.003% of total turnover as Transaction charges on Equity and Delivery Trading.
  3. For Derivatives trading, BSE doesn’t cost any transaction charges. However, on NSE, the Exchange transaction charge is 0.0019% for futures trading and 0.05% of total turnover for Options Trading.

– SEBI Turnover Charges

  1. SEBI stands for the Securities exchange board of India and it is the security market regulator. SEBI makes the rules and regulations on the exchanges for its proper functioning.
  2. SEBI Turnover fee is charged on both sides of the transaction i.e. while buying and selling and is the same for all equity intraday, delivery, futures, and options trading.
  3. The SEBI turnover charge is equal to Rs 10 per crore of the total turnover.

– Depository Participant (DP) Charges

  1. There are two stock depositories in India- NSDL (National Securities Depository Limited) and CDSL (Central Depository Services Limited). Whenever you buy a share, it is kept in an electronic form in a depository. For this service, the depositories charge some fixed amount.
  2. The depositories don’t charge the traders or investors directory but charge the depository participant. Here, the brokerage firm or your demat account company is the depository participant (DP).
  3. DP acts as a linkage between the depository and the investor as the investors cannot directly approach the depository. In short, the depository charges the DP and then the depository participant (DP) charges the investors.
  4. For example, while trading with Zerodha, DP charge is equal to ₹13.5 + GST per scrip (irrespective of quantity), on the day, is debited from the trading account, i.e. when stocks are sold. This is charged by the depository and depository participant.

– Goods & Service Taxes (GST)

GST is the mandatory tax levied by the government on the services rendered and is equal to 18% of total brokerage and transaction charges.

– Capital Gain Taxes

Lastly, Capital gain taxes is the most important tax to understand in this article for the traders and investors. We are not going to cover all the details regarding capital gain taxes in this article, but just a short over. If you want to read the complete details, you can refer to this article.

  1. There are two types of Capital gain taxes in India – Short-term capital gain tax and Long-term capital gain tax.
  2. When you sell a stock before one year of buying, then it is considered as a Short-term. Here a flat 15% of the profit is charged as short-term capital gain tax.
  3. When you sell a stock after one year of holding, then it is called the long-term. For the long term capital gain, you have to pay a tax equal to 10% of the gains, if it exceeds Rs 1 lakh.
  4. For Intraday Traders, they need to pay taxes on their capital gains which depends on their tax slab. For example, if you’re in the highest tax slab and made some profits while intraday trading, you’ve to pay taxes of 30% on those gains.

Example of Different Charges on Share Trading

Now, let us see an example to understand these different charges on share trading and taxes involved better. Suppose there are two traders- Rajat and Prasad. Here, Rajat is a delivery trader who invests in the long-term i.e. for 2-3 years. On the other hand, Prasad is an intraday trader.

They both have their accounts in the same discount brokerage company named ABC. The brokerage charge for ABC is Rs 20 Per trade on intraday trading and FREE for delivery trading.

Also, let us suppose that both Rajat and Prasad have traded a total turnover of Rs 10,000 in a share (i.e. total cost involved while buying and selling). In addition, they both live in Maharastra.

Now the different charges and taxes paid by them for complete trading i.e. from buying to selling the shares can be given as-

 Prasad (Intraday Trader)Rajat (Delivery Trader)
Buy Price120120
Sell Price125125
Quantity400400
Total TurnoverRs 98000Rs 98000
ExchangeNSENSE
StateMaharashtraMaharashtra
Brokerage ChargeRs 40 (Flat Rs 20 Per trade i.e. Buying & Sellling)Rs 0 (FREE Delivery Trades)
STT0.025% of sell side = 0.025 % of Rs 50,000 = Rs 12.50.1% on buy & sell = 0.1% of 98000 = Rs 98
Stamp Duty (Maharashtra)0.002% of total turnover = 0.002% of 98000 = Rs 1.960.01% of total turnover = 0.01% of 98000 = Rs 9.8
Transaction Charges0.00325% of total turnover = 0.00325% of Rs 10,000= Rs 3.180.00325% of total turnover = 0.00325% of Rs 10,000= Rs 3.18
SEBI Turnover ChargesRs 10 / Crore of Total Turnover= Rs 0.10Rs 10 / Crore of Total Turnover= Rs 0.10
GST18% on (brokerage + transaction charges) = 0.18 * (40+ 3.18)= Rs 7.7718% on (brokerage + transaction charges) = 0.18 * (0+ 3.18) = 0.57
Total Brokerage And Taxes65.51111.65
Total Profit or Loss1934.491888.35
Capital Gain TaxDepends on the tax SlabDepends on Short/long term

At first glance, it looks cheap to invest in intraday as the total charges are comparatively less here. But you should note that the frequency of trading for intraday traders is quite high. Many intraday traders easily make 2-3 high volume trades every day. So, they have to pay these brokerage charges and taxes again and again. On the other hand, delivery traders or long-term investors do not make such frequent trades.

Overall, charges and taxes are a very important part of trading and should not be ignored. You might think that you are in profit, but the real profit is the one which is left after deducting the charges and profit. I hope the traders will keep this in mind before trading the next time.

Zerodha Brokerage Calculator

Before ending this article, here’s the brokerage calculator for equity trades using Zerodha, the discount broker.

Quick Note: If you’re interested in opening your demat account with Zerodha, the No 1 stockbroker in India, here’s a direct link to the account opening page.





That’s all for this post. If you’ve any doubts related to the different charges on share trading in India, feel free to comment below. I’ll be happy to help you out. Cheers & Happy Trading!

first mover advantage

Is First Mover a competitive advantage for a firm?

Zerodha was the first mover in the discount broking industry. Unlike the traditional brokers like Sharekhan, ICICI Direct, HDFC sec, etc. who charge large brokerages for their trading services, Zerodha offers a low brokerage charge. And as of 2019, Zerodha has outranked all these big players to become the biggest broking firm in India.

While reading this incredible success of Zerodha, one obvious question among people is whether being the first mover in the discount business model, the biggest reason for the Zerodha’s success? How big is the actual competitive advantage for the first movers? In this post, we are going to discuss the same.

Who are First Movers?

First movers are those companies who are the ‘first’ in line to offer their products or services in the market. They are the ones to innovate and develop a product/service which was not available previously in the market. Further, they do not face similar competition like the ones in the established markets.

In many cases, such companies can build great brand recognition and loyal customers for their products/services during the time gap, i.e. before the competitors enter.

An important point to note is that first-mover advantage is here referred only to those companies who are able to scale and make establish a big market, not the ones who just started the idea but didn’t make it large.

I mean, Amazon might not be the first company in the online bookselling industry. A lot of small businesses might be selling books or their products online before its establishment. However, Amazon was the one who was able to capture a significant market, make an impact and hence, can be considered as an actual first mover in this industry.

A few other examples of the first movers in their respective industry can be Kindle (ebook selling), eBay (online auction), Apple (iPhone & iPads), Uber (taxi booking & ride-sharing), etc.

In India, companies like Flipkart, Oyo, Olx, Ola etc. are the ‘Regional’ first movers. Although they copied the concept from their global rivals, however, being the first mover in the Indian subcontinent region gave them an advantage.

Advantages of First Movers

Being the first mover, a company can enjoy a lot of benefits compared to the later entrants. Here are a few of the best advantages of first movers:

  • Brand recognition: First movers can create a strong impression which can help them build a passionate customer fan-base and create a big brand recognition even before any competitors enter.
  • Price & Benchmarking: The first movers enjoy the advantage of setting up their prices for the newly offered products/services and creating their own industry standards/benchmark.
  • Technological advantages: Being the first mover and having no competition allows a company to give sufficient time to build a perfect product and get a head start. Further, they can also file proprietary or patent rights to continue enjoying technological advantages.
  • Control of resources: First movers can control the resources by doing a strategic partnership (or exclusive agreements) with vendors, supplier; renting the best locations, hiring most talented employees in their industry, etc. The later entrants may face difficulty to find similar resources.
  • Switching cost: If the customer has to cost a lot of money, time, efforts, or resources to switch from one product to another, it is considered as the switching cost. First movers can enjoy the benefits of switching cost by launching their products earlier. Here, even if a better product/service is available, the customer may stick with the old company, if the switching cost is high.

Also read: SWOT Analysis for Stocks: A Simple Yet Effective Study Tool.

Disadvantages of First movers

Although being a first-mover looks a lot advantageous for a firm, however, it has its downsides too. Here are a few cons of being a first mover.

  • In most cases, the later entrants or competitors can reverse-engineer, copy, or even improve upon the product/services offered by the first movers.
  • The first movers might take a lot of time to learn and innovate. On the other hand, the following entrants generally have a lower learning curve and can build the product faster.
  • The first movers might find it challenging to persuade people to try new product/services. However, later entrants can reduce this education cost.
  • The first movers can also face a lot of competition from the free riders. As the Imitation cost < Innovation cost, a lot of copy-cats can join the expanding industry to enjoy the upwards ride and reduce the profitability of the first movers.
  • The second movers or the competitors can avoid the failed steps made by the first movers and hence reduce their cost/expenses.

Is First mover a competitive advantage for a firm?

In the investing world, the competitive advantages are the ones which are sustainable for the long term, not for a few years.

Admittedly, being the first mover is advantageous and have a lot of perks. However, over time, the later entrants can destroy this advantage through reverse-engineering, workforce mobility, technical advancement, or even by merely copying the products/service offered by the first mover.

Also read: Pat Dorsey’s Four Moats for Picking Quality Companies

Closing Thoughts

There’s one thing sure in this competitive world. First movers will not always be the only player in any industry. As they grow, a lot of new companies will enter that industry and try to eat their profits.

Further, a lot of big successful global giants were not the first movers. For example, Google was not the first search engine. It followed the model of Yahoo or Infoseek. Similarly, Facebook was a later entrant in the social media world after Friendster and Orkut. Even Starbucks or Cafe Coffee Day (CCD) is a copied business model of the famous local coffee chains. Still, these companies were able to dominate the market and establish a big brand and customer network.

Anyways, in a few cases, if the first movers can dominate a big market and establish a loyal customer base, they may retain a healthy growth level and profitability, despite new entrants.

Portfolio rebalancing cover

What is Portfolio Rebalancing? And Why is it important?

For the investing world, the term ‘Portfolio’ means a basket of securities. There is a popular saying that- ‘Do not put all your eggs in a single basket’. A similar strategy is applicable for your investments too. While investing in the financial market, it is always recommended to spread your investments across diversified securities to reduce risk. And this collection of diversified financial instruments is termed as a portfolio.

While creating a portfolio one should always aim to build a balanced one. A balanced portfolio can reduce portfolio risk and also offers stability. Let us understand it better with the help of an example.

Suppose Arjun, a 25-year-old salaried guy, has a current net worth of Rs 5 lakhs. Out of his entire worth, he has invested Rs 4.5 lakhs is stocks and has kept the remaining money as cash in hand. Here, although Arjun’s portfolio consists of two different assets (i.e. cash in hand and stocks), however, do you think his portfolio can be called balanced?

What, if the market witnesses a bearish trend for the next two years? In such a scenario, Arjun’s portfolio might look almost all reddened as he has invested 90% of his entire net worth in the stock market.

However, let’s consider another scenario where Arjun has diversified his assets smartly in different securities and his portfolio looks something like this:

— Investment in stocks = Rs 2 lakh
— Investment in debt funds = Rs 2 lakh
— Cash in hand = Rs. 1 lakh

The above portfolio looks a little balanced as Arjun has allocated his investments better this time. In this case, even if the stock market fails to perform well for quite some time, the loss on stocks (if any) will be mostly absorbed by the returns from the debt funds. Therefore, despite the things do not work out as well as planned, Arjun will either lose only a minor portion of his corpus or won’t lose anything at all.

Overall, a balanced portfolio helps the individuals to spread their investments across high-risk instruments to low-risk securities. In the simple example discussed earlier, Arjun has constructed a balanced portfolio by investing smartly in stocks (high-risk securities), debt funds (low-risk instruments) and cash in hand (lowest risk of all).

What is portfolio rebalancing?

So far we have just talked about portfolio balancing or a balanced portfolio.

However, as assets appreciate/depreciate with time, this allocation may change in the future and even a balanced portfolio may not remain balanced over time. In Arjun’s case, suppose his portfolio looks like this after 5 years since he originally invested:

— Stocks = Rs. 3.8 lakhs
— Debt funds = Rs. 2.2 lakh
— Cash in hand = Rs. 1 lakh

Here you can notice that Arjun’s assets have gone up by Rs. 2,00,000 in 5 years. This majorly happened because his investments in stocks have performed well and given him amazing returns.

However, his current portfolio is different from his original desired asset allocation. Initially, his portfolio consisted of 40% in stocks, 40% in bonds and the rest 20% in cash. However, his current allocation consists of 54.28% in stocks, 31.4% in bonds and remaining in cash. Obviously, if Arjun wants to restore his original allocation, he will have to sell a few of his stocks and increase the investments in bonds so that both get adjusted back to 40% each. This activity is called portfolio rebalancing.

Portfolio rebalancing involves periodically buying and selling assets for the purpose of keeping the portfolio aligned to the predetermined strategy or risk level. In other words, during portfolio rebalancing, you’re selling off those securities which you do not require anymore and reinvesting the proceeds to buy the instruments you need. Another key point to note here is that in portfolio rebalancing, you are not adding any fresh money to your existing portfolio. You are simply adjusting the allocation in your portfolio.

Why does your portfolio need rebalancing?

Here are a few of the biggest reasons why you need to rebalance your portfolio at regular intervals.

1. If you don’t rebalance your portfolio periodically, it may get riskier with time.

You should rebalance your portfolio at regular intervals to maintain the desired risk level, especially in case of big changes in the market. Furthermore, it is a known fact that as you grow older, your risk appetite decreases. Therefore, in that case, you should develop a habit of constantly shifting your assets from equity to debts to add stability to your portfolio against the risk of loss.

2. It helps is keeping your portfolio in line with your goals/needs

Along with maintaining your existing corpus, improving returns is also necessary to grow your wealth. Equities or Equity based Mutual Funds are mostly used for beating the benchmark indices and earning sufficient inflation-adjusted returns. However, if you find any of your stocks are constantly underperforming for a considerable amount of time, you should consider replacing them with some other securities. A disciplined portfolio rebalancing will ensure that your portfolio is aligned with your financial plan.

3. Portfolio rebalancing helps in planning your taxes.

Equities and Equity based Mutual Funds attract 10% long term capital gains tax if such capital gain exceeds Rs.1 lakh.

If you a small investor, you can consider redeeming your equities in a financial year and invest the proceeds elsewhere. This will not only help in booking profits but will also help you in spreading your tax liability uniformly across the years. Similarly, you can also plan to redeem your investments in such a way that you can carry-forward your previously-occurred capital gain losses or to set off against capital gains to save further taxes in future.

Incurred Costs while rebalancing your portfolio

Portfolio rebalancing is not free as it costs money for buying and selling the assets. Here are a few common costs that you have to incur for rebalancing your portfolio:

1. Whenever you buy or sell any financial instrument, you have to incur a few unavoidable expenses in the form of brokerage, STT, commission, stamp duty etc. Although you can reduce the incurred costs by using discount brokers or investing in direct mutual funds, however, you cannot avoid them completely.

2. You may have to pay some unnecessary taxes: When you rebalance your portfolio, you get involved in selling a few of your investments. This might result in capital gains which attract tax liability on the same. Further, if you rebalance your portfolio too fast and sell your assets, you have to pay Short-term capital gain taxes (which is almost always higher than the long-term capital gain taxes).

3. You may have to pay some penal charges:  If you redeem a few investments before a specified time period (or locking period), you may have to pay some penal charges. For example, if you withdraw your money from your ongoing Fixed Deposit Account, your Banker may impose a nominal penalty. Similarly, if you redeem your Equity Mutual Fund units within a year, you may have to pay an exit load.

Also read:

Closing thoughts

If you want to get into physical shape, the balanced diet is a must. Similarly, if you are willing to generate long term wealth through your investments, creating a balanced portfolio is essential. However, your portfolio will remain balanced for long-term only if you keep rebalancing the same at adequate intervals of time.

To be honest, no one can tell what must be the exact time to rebalance your portfolio. Nevertheless, it is recommended that you should keep checking the allocation of your assets in your portfolio at least every year or two. This will ensure that your investments are in line with your goals/needs.

That’s all for this post. I hope it was useful for you. Happy Investing!

Boston Consulting Group Analysis - BCG Matrix Explained cover

What is a BCG Matrix? Explanation with Example!

Hey fellow readers! Today’s topic of concentration is how do analysts perform the Boston Consulting Group – BCG Matrix Analysis on companies! Initially, it might seem like a big deal but the truth is, with a little knowledge and awareness, any layman can execute the BCG analysis to get an apparent outlook about the company. Applying this Analysis on a company can also help an individual to gain an edge if they are particularly looking to invest in the company! Well, without much adieu, let’s dive in!

Boston Consulting Group Analysis

The Boston Consulting Group is a management consulting firm that was founded in 1963. It helps organizations to improve their performance by working on the key areas like the right implementation of technology, development of strategies and improvement in operational services.

As a result of their exposure and relationships with top-notch organizations, they are supremely aware of the industry’s best practices. In Fortune Magazine‘s 2007 Survey of “100 Best US Companies to Work For”, Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has received the 8th rank amongst all for their immense contribution.

In the year 1970, BCG shaped up a Product Portfolio Matrix to assess long term growth opportunities in the business by analyzing the product lines and thereafter untap their real capabilities. Even after 49 years of its establishment, the BCG matrix still remains a priceless apparatus for assisting companies in reaping the visions.

The tool is employed in reference to the distribution of resources in appropriate segments and utilizes them in the marketing of brands, product administration, strategic management, and portfolio perceptivity. However, the method is also referred to as the Growth-Share Matrix.

BCG Matrix Dimensions

Let us now understand the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) matrix in a subjective way.

Growth-Share Matrix is a graphical planning tool for corporate and businesses where the company’s products and services are plotted on axes and conclude major business verdicts.

Two prominent dimensions like Competitive Position (Relative Market Share) and Industry Attractiveness (Growth Rate Of That Industry) are taken help to estimate the true capacity of a business brand portfolio and advice further investment programs. These two dimensions determine the likely profitability of the business portfolio in terms of required cash to back the unit and cash generated by it. The conventional agenda of the inquiry is to understand the areas of investment, divestment, and development.

It is one of the most accepted methods of Portfolio Analysis and segregates a firm’s product and services into a 2/2 Matrix or, into four quadrants. Each quadrant is labeled as low or, high according to their performance which is again further based on the Relative Market Share and Growth Rate Of The Market.

  1. The Horizontal Axis i.e. x-axis indicates the extent of the market share of a product and its consecutive firmness in the particular market. It also helps to quantify a company’s competitiveness.
  2. On the other hand, the vertical axis ie. y-axis indicates the growth rate of a product and its ability to grow in a particular market.

1. Relative Market Share

  1. A higher market share generally means higher cash return and the logic behind the allotment of this dimension is dependent on its relationship with the experience curve.
  2. The usual notion is that when the company generates more number of products, it enjoys the advantage of low input costs and leads to increased profits.
  3. The market share of a company is always taken into consideration in relation to the marker share its major peer.
  4. It reveals the brand’s position amongst its competitors and is a subtle indication of its future prospects.

2. Market Growth Rate

  1. A high growth rate in the market is an indication of higher earnings and higher profits.
  2. It also refers to a higher level of investment in the product lines. This is a positive sign of consistent growth and an expectation to get a handsome return on investment.
  3. The market growth rate gives us significant data about the position of the brand other than the cash flow.
  4. It is also a reliable parameter of the stability of the market and attractiveness of the industry.

In addition, the four quadrants in the Growth-Share Matrix are as follows: Stars, Question marks, Cash cows, Dogs

bcg matrix analysis boston consulting group

The postulation of the Growth-Share Matrix is that an increment in the relative market share will lead to higher cash flow.

Firms acquire an upper hand from using economies of scale and yields a cost advantage in relation to its competitors. The growth rate of the market differs from industry to industry where growth rates more than 10% are seen as high while growth rates less than 10% are seen as low.

Also read: SWOT Analysis for Stocks: A Simple Yet Effective Study Tool.

BCG Matrix Breakdown

1. The BCG Matrix: Stars

Stars are business entities that have a mammoth market share in a fast-pacing industry. These product lines have a crystal clear niche and need sound investment to maintain their market position, push growth, and carry out a competitive advantage. Stars absorb a considerable amount of cash and also spawn huge cash flows.

Investments in the Stars can be a wise decision since they are the primary units and are awaited to become Cash Cows. Generation of positive cash flow takes place as the market reaches its mature stage and the products successfully retain their dominant position. Stars are the prized possession of a company and are placed in the top categories in a firm’s product portfolio.

Anyways, not all Stars end up as Cash Flows because random new products can soon be outjumped by innovative technological advancements in the course of rapidly dynamic industries. The strategic choices which can be incorporated are Vertical integration, market penetration, horizontal integration, product development, and market development.

2. The BCG Matrix: Question Marks

Question Marks are those business entities that have low market shares in a fast pacing market. Question marks are the most managerially radical products and need pervasive investment and resources to escalate their market share. They also need extensive monitoring because investments in question marks are broadly funded by cash flows.

Question marks do not always see the lights of success and even after the colossal amounts of investments they toil hard to gain market share and gradually transform into dogs. The natural or, typical cycle for most products in that they flag off their journey as Question Marks and eventually become stars with the clarification in their position.

When there is a slowdown in market growth, they metamorphose into Cash Cows and finally, the Cash Cow turns into  Dogs. The strategic choices which can be incorporated are Market Development, Market Penetration, Product Development, and divestiture.

3. The BCG Matrix: Cash Cows

The product lines under the Cash Cows Quadrant has an enormous share of the market in a sluggish -growing industry. In this case, the generation of the revenue outpasses the initial investments which are necessary to preserve their business. Products in the cash cows quadrant are looked up to as products that are the leadmen in the market. These products already have an important chunk of investments and do not demand more investments to withhold their position.

Cash cows are termed as the most prosperous brands and should be “milked” to generate consistent cash flow as much as possible. These Cash flows are generally utilized to finance Stars and Question Marks to nurture their future growth. It is advised by different Financial Analysts that corporates should invest less in Cash Cows and reap the generated profits from the existing products.

However, this point always doesn’t hold true as Cash Cows are usually big corporations that are proficient in creating new products that might become Stars in the long run. The strategic choices which can be incorporated are product development, diversification, divestiture, retrenchment.

3. The BCG Matrix: Dogs

Dogs are those business entities that have a scanty market share in a ripened and slow-growing market. Products falling under the dogs quadrant are somehow able to protract themselves by initiating cash flows and sustain the market share.

Usually, this unit is mainly valueless to the company in terms of earning capability. However, it might give rise to other small scale benefits such as the production of jobs and mutualism that help other business units. Firms sell off products belonging to the Dogs Quadrant unless the products are complementary to existing products or are used to act as a shield to oppose the moves of the competitors.

According to financial analysts, corporate should avoid investing in such product lines because they lead to negative cash returns. Dogs can massively affect the investors’ sentiments and their personal views about the management of a company. The strategic choices which can be incorporated are retrenchment, Divestiture, and  Liquidation.

According to the Boston Consulting Group, a branched out company with an equitable portfolio is in the standardized gallery to utilize its strengths to capitalize on the opportunities of expansion and multiplication. However, an equitable portfolio is one which has

  1. Stars to embolden future success.
  2. Question marks that have a probability to turn into Stars with some consideration, management, and investment.
  3. Cash cows to generate funds for future growth.

BCG Matrix Analysis

Now that we have gained an insight into the basics of BCG Matrix, let us now learn the steps for its application.

1. Choose the unit:

Strategic Business Units(SBU), Independent  Brands, Product Lines or the Firm as a unit can be researched using the BCG matrix. The selected unit steers the whole analysis and crucial definitions. As the market, industry, competitors, and position will all be driven based on the chosen unit, it is extremely important to define the unit demarcated for analysis.

2. Define the market

The most momentous stage for the entire matrix is the key definition of the market. An erroneously defined market will make way for an erroneous classification of the unit. Suppose, if we would do the analysis for the Gucci dresses in the regular clothing market it would end up as a Dog but it would be a Cash Cow in the luxury clothing sector. Therefore, It is a major task to transparently explain the market in order to get a solid grip on a firm’s portfolio position.

3. Calculation of Relative Market Share

Relative Market Share can be enumerated in terms of revenues or, market share. It is calculated by dividing the brand’s market share by the market share of the market leader/supreme competitor in an industry.

For example, if the competitor’s market share in the automobile industry is  37% and a firm’s brand market share is  13% in a year, the relative market share would amount to 0.35.

4. Calculation of Market Growth Rate

The growth rate of an industry can be found from the industry reports released every year and are put up on official websites. It can also be calculated by considering the average revenue growth of the leading industrial enterprises. However, it is to be kept in mind that the growth rate of a Market is expressed in terms of percentage.

5. Draw the circles on a matrix

After calculating all the parameters, one can easily plot the brands on the matrix. The plotter should draw a circle for each brand within a unit, or for all the brands in a company. The size of the circle should be in proportion to the generated revenue of the brand.

Let’s apply these steps to analyze an India Company!

amul products

For ease of understanding the concept, we are taking ‘Amul’ a well-known company in India as our example.

Amul brand is a prominent and popular name in the dairy industry in India. It produces milk, butter, and other dairy-related products and successfully caters to the Indian population.

The exercise of BCG Matrix on the brand can furnish critical information about the products and the product lines that are a pivotal source of revenue for the organization. The BCG matrix for Amul is as follows:

1. Stars

The products which are considered as Stars of Amul are Amul Ice cream and Amul Ghee.  These two products have a high market share and have adequate possibilities to grow in the near future. Amul Ghee has also been a Star for the company as the brand has been able to acquire a 30% hike in its sales while the market share clinged by the product is around 18% along with a yearly turnover of more than Rs 1,700 Crores.

2. Question Mark

Amul Lassi is diagnosed as a Question Mark as their capability as a major derivation of profitability remains quite bleak. Amul lassi has been brought about in the market with the agenda to magnify the market share and give a tough competition with the other beverages available in the market. The healthy milk from Amul possesses a huge potential to swell in the future considering the expansion of interest and demand for healthy products, refreshments, and beverages.

3. Cash Cows

There are three products under the umbrella of Amul that come under the Cash Cow category and they are  Amul Milk, Amul Butter, and Amul Cheese. The market share of these products is not likely to undergo colossal gains but their current spot makes them a high revenue contributor.

4. Dogs

Amul has two products that have not been able to generate sales and revenues as per the estimation. One of the noteworthy examples in this regard is Amul Chocolates and Amul Pizza. The competitors make it tough to amplify the market shares to a notable degree which can turn this product to become an outstanding source of sustainable revenues. However, if the sales figures do not proceed towards betterment, a probable measure would be to take the path of divestment of the above-mentioned brands.

Benefits of BCG Matrix Analysis

Every theory and model exiting in the books have their pros and cons. Similarly, Boston Consulting Group( BCG) has its own set. Here are a few of the benefits of BCG Matrix:

  1. The BCG Matrix is beneficent for managers to assure a  balance in the companies’ current portfolio consisting of Stars, Cash Cows, Question Marks, and Dogs.
  2. BCG-Matrix is befitting to large-cap companies that usually look for volume and experience effects.
  3. The model is coherent and easy to apply and also provides a base for management to take decisions and jack up for future activities.

Limitations of BCG Matrix Analysis

Here are a few of the common limitations of using BCG matrix for analyzing companies:

  1. Growth-share analysis has been highly disapproved of for its simple calculations and absence of a fruitful application.
  2. Market share and Industry Growth are not the sole factors of profitability. Besides, high market share always does not mean high profits.
  3. This matrix does not take into consideration any other factors that may have an effect on both competitive advantage & industry attractiveness.
  4. It denies the correlation between different existing units. In reality, products under  Dogs may be assisting another unit to gain a competitive advantage.
  5. The definition of a market is taken from a broader perspective and often neglects smaller aspects.

Summary

Let us quickly summarise what we discussed in this article. The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) is a management consulting firm that helps organizations to make informed decisions from the business point of view.

They introduced the Growth-Share Matrix which is a designing and a planning tool that prepares graphical representations on the basis of a company’s products and services. The Growth-Share Matrix categorizes a firm’s products into four divisions namely Dogs, Cash Cows, Stars, and Question Marks. The four divisions are based on the Relative Market Share and Growth Rate Of The Market. This Matrix immensely helps the company to make decisions regarding investment,  divestment, liquidity, and retrenchments.

Measurement Scales Balance Swinging Swing Equality

Is Stock Market Investing a Zero-Sum Game?

One of the most debated questions regarding stock market is that- Is stock market investing a zero-sum game? If someone makes money in the stock market, does it means that someone else must be losing money?

In this post, we are going to demystify this question and try to answer whether stock investing is a zero-sum game or not.

What is a Zero-Sum Game?

A Zero-sum game is a situation where one person’s profit is equivalent to the another’s a loss so that the net change in wealth is Zero.

A few popular examples of zero-sum game is Poker and gambling. In poker, the amount won by one player is equal to the combined losses of the other participants. Please note that there can be two or multiple participants in such games.

Moreover, Zero-sum games are contrary to win-win situations.

poker

Is stock market investing a Zero-sum game?

When it comes to the stock market, the majority assumes that the market is a zero-sum game. After all, the money made by someone should come from a source and most believe that it costs from the other losing participant.

However, this is not true. Investing in stock can be mutually beneficial.

In the share market, trades are based on future expectations and because of the different risk tolerances of the participants.

Just because someone is selling their stock, doesn’t mean he is losing. He might have made substantial profits and willing to book profits. And similarly, if one sells, there’s no reason to think that the next investor can’t profit too. Here, both the parties can be winners.

Overall, a zero-sum game isn’t the right description of investing. As the company expands and becomes more valuable, the stock market can increase the wealth of both the participants & economy over time.

win win situation stocks Is Stock Market Investing a Zero-Sum Game?

Dividends…

An important factor which is invariably ignored while studying the stock market as a zero-sum game is the dividends. As corporations generate profits from the sales, they share a portion of this profits with their shareholders as the dividends.

(There are even cases where the investors get back more money than the original invested amount just as dividends over time.)

If the market was a closed system with just buyers and sellers, somewhere it could be possibly considered as a zero-sum game. However, it is not a closed system as money is consistently pumped into it as dividends by the companies.

Quick Note: The exception to these scenarios are the companies that do not pay dividends.

Also read:

Closing Thoughts

Investing is not a zero-sum game and both the parties can be winners.

Here, the profit for the participants doesn’t come from the stake of losses by other participants, but from the value created by the company. If one sells a stock, there’s no reason to think that the next investor can’t profit too. As long as the business is performing well, the stock will keep on increasing value without anyone losing the money.

Overall, there doesn’t need to be one winner and other losers. Stock market provides an opportunity for a win-win situation for all.

7 Must Know Websites for Indian Stock Market Investors cover

7 Must Know Websites for Indian Stock Market Investors

7 Must know websites for Indian stock market Investors: The Internet is full of resources. You can find tons of information out there for free. However, as this count increases, it’s literally impossible to remember all the sources that you visit even in a single day. Luckily, for the Indian stock investors, there are not many such great websites. Even if you only remember a few of the best ones, it will help you to keep yourself updated with all the market news, trends, announcements, happenings and all.

In this post, I am going to discuss seven such must know websites for Indian stock market investors.

Please note that there is one such website that every stock investor gets ‘used to’ when he/she starts learning the stock market. It is named INVESTOPEDIA. I won’t be discussing this website in this post as it is not a website totally based on the Indian share market. Today, I’ll only cover such seven best Indian sites. Further, do read the post till the end, as there is a bonus in the last section.

7 Must-Know Websites for Indian Stock Market Investors

1. Money Control

Website: http://www.moneycontrol.com/

money control website 2020

Moneycontrol is certainly the most popular website among the Indian stock investor. You can find all sorts of information on this website like market news, trends, charts, livestock prices, commodities, currencies, mutual funds, personal finance, IPOs etc.

For equity investors, here you can find the fundamental data of any company along with technical indicators (including candlesticks charts). Moneycontrol website also provides a platform to track your investments and to create your own wish list.

Further, the discussion forum offered by this website is also among one of the unique features of this website. If you are unable to find the latest news regarding the drastic share movement of any company, just go to the forum of the stock, and read the discussions. However, please do not get influenced by the comments in the discussion section as a few may also be spam discussion posts.

In addition, money control also offers an app on all mobile platforms- Android, IOS, and windows. The app is amazing because of its simple user interface and great navigation features. If you do not have this app installed on your phone, I would highly recommend you to install it now.

2. Screener

Website: https://www.screener.in/

screener website

The screener is a great website to perform the fundamental analysis of a company like reading its financial statements, ratios, etc. Most of the features on Screener are absolutely free. You can find a number of important information about the companies on this website like financial ratios, charts, analysis, peers/competitors, quarterly results, annual results, profit & loss statements, balance sheet, cash flows, etc.

The best part is the customized financial reports which are created in such a manner that only useful information is shown. No clutters! The financial statements of a company are very long, however, the screener simplifies the financials in small useful chunks. Anyone can easily read the annual reports, balance sheet, etc on this website because of the user-friendly display of the data.

I regularly use this website to check the financials of a company and will also recommend using this website. It saves a lot of time for the readers to navigate through the financials.

Also read: How to use SCREENER.IN like an Expert

BONUS: Here’s a video on how you can use the SCREENER website to find stocks to invest in the Indian stock market.

3. Investing.com

Website: https://in.investing.com/

investing market

Investing is a great site if you want to find comprehensive information regarding a public company. You can perform both fundamental and technical analysis of stocks on this website. The different pieces of information available on this website are general info, chart, news and analysis, financials, technicals, forums, etc.

You can also use a number of amazing ‘tools’ available on this website for free. The best one is ‘Stock screener’. Using this tool, you can screen stocks and shortlist them based on different criteria like market capitalization, PE ratio, ROE, CAGR, etc.

I also use investing for technical analysis as there are a number of technical indicators that are available on this website and easy to use. In short, if you haven’t visited this website, then go on and check it out.

4. Economic Times Market

Website: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets

ET Market

This is one of the best websites to stay updated with the latest market news. The economic times market provides instant and reliable financial news. It also posts morning and evening ‘briefs’. In case you missed the news an entire day, you can simply read all the happenings of the day here.

Further, the ET market provides similar information as the money control website in terms of features it provides like stock charts, portfolio, Wishlist, expert views, mutual funds, commodities, etc.

Quick break: New to stock market? Confused where to start? Here is a great book on stock market investing, which I highly recommend the beginners to read: ONE UP ON WALL STREET by Peter Lynch.

5. Live Mint

Website: http://www.livemint.com/

live mint website

Another amazing website to read a variety of posts regarding the stock market, finance, economy, politics, science, sports etc. If you’re involved in the share market, you should also keep your consistently updated with the latest news in India and abraod. This website will keep you updated with all the happenings so that you do not miss out on any important news that might affect your stock selection in the future.

6. NSE India

Website: https://www.nseindia.com/

NSE India website

This is the official website of the National stock exchange (NSE). You can get the information of all the companies listed on NSE exchange along with their financials on this site. The information provided on this website is consistently updated and accurate. As the company has an obligation to submit their financial reports to the exchanges, you can always find the financial data of any company on this website, in case you can’t find it elsewhere.

Further, along with charts, there are tons of historical data regarding NSE and nifty available on this website. You can find information about the corporates, domestic and foreign investors, new listings, IPOs, etc. NSE India also provides courses and certifications and you can also read the daily updates of bulk and block deals on NSE website.

7. BSE India

Website: http://www.bseindia.com/

bse india website

BSE India is the website of the Bombay stock exchange (BSE). This website is similar to NSE India in terms of most pieces of information. However, you can find more data here as BSE Sensex has been incorporated for a longe time ago compared to NSE and has over 5,500 publicly listed companies. Quick note, you can also download the complete list of ‘public’ companies listed on this exchange from the BSE India website.

Also read: How to find complete list of stocks listed in the Indian stock market?

Further, the various information available on BSE India is market info, charts, Public offers, OFS, IPOs, Domestic and foreign investors, etc. BSE India also provides training and certifications.

Bonuses (As promised)

Here are two common websites which you can visit to know the IPO allotment results.

Whenever you apply for an IPO (Initial public offering), although NSE/BSE will send you a text message/mail about the allotment result. However, their messages are mostly delayed by a day or two. If you want to check the result of IPO allotment in time, you can check it on the following websites. You just have to enter the PAN Card with which you have applied for the IPO.

Link in time website

Seven more popular stock research websites that you should know:

  1. Google Finance: https://www.google.com/finance
  2. Yahoo Finance: https://in.finance.yahoo.com
  3. Rediff money: http://money.rediff.com/index.html
  4. MarketMojo: https://www.marketsmojo.com/
  5. Investello: https://www.investello.com
  6. Trendlyne: https://trendlyne.com
  7. Chittorgarh: http://www.chittorgarh.com

Important Links on NSE/BSE:

  1. Bulk/ Bulk Deal (BSE)
  2. Bulk/Block Deal (NSE)
  3. Download the complete list of NSE Stocks
  4. Download the complete list of BSE Stocks

Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI)

  1. SEBI: https://www.sebi.gov.in/

Websites to read the financial news:

  1. ET Market (http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets)
  2. LiveMint (http://www.livemint.com)
  3. Bloomberg Quint (https://www.bloombergquint.com)

Stock Screeners that you should know:

  1. Screener: https://www.screener.in/
  2. Investing: https://in.investing.com/stock-screener/
  3. Edelweiss: https://www.edelweiss.in/oyo/equity/user/screener
  4. Equity master: https://www.equitymaster.com/research-it/company-info/stock-screener-india.asp
  5. Moneyworks4me: https://www.moneyworks4me.com/stock-market/stock-screener
  6. CapitalCube: https://online.capitalcube.com/#!/screener
  7. Investello: https://www.investello.com/screeners
  8. Trendlyne: https://trendlyne.com/stock-screeners/
  9. Google Finance: https://finance.google.com/finance#stockscreener

Also read: 7 Best Stock Market Apps that Makes Stock Research 10x Easier.

Summary

In this post, we discussed the seven must know websites for Indian stock market investors. Let’s quickly revise those websites:

  1. Money Control (http://www.moneycontrol.com)
  2. Screener (https://www.screener.in)
  3. Investing (https://in.investing.com)
  4. ET Market (http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets)
  5. LiveMint (http://www.livemint.com)
  6. NSE India (https://www.nseindia.com)
  7. BSE India (http://www.bseindia.com)

That’s all. I hope this post on ‘7 must know websites for Indian stock market investors’ is useful to the viewers. In case, you haven’t visited the above-mentioned websites, do check it out. Further, if I missed any big name, please comment below. Happy Investing.

If you are new to stocks and want to learn how to select good stocks for long-term investment, check out this amazing online course: HOW TO PICK WINNING PICKS? The course is currently available at a discount.

10 Best Youtube Channels to Learn Indian Stock Market cover

10 Best Youtube Channels to Learn Indian Stock Market

10 Best Youtube Channels to Learn Indian Stock Market: With the boom of the internet, self-education has never been easier. Now, you can learn any skill that you crave by sitting on your couch and watching youtube videos. And that too for FREE. There are tons of information and resources available on youtube to learn whatever you want. And if you want to acquire financial literacy without spending a dime, Youtube is definitely one of the best places where you should be.

Anyways, if you are a newbie to investing world, you might not know the best youtube channels to learn Indian stock market. After all, there are thousands of youtube channels that discuss stocks. But which ones give the best information? We’ll answer this question today. In this post, we are going to discuss ten Best Youtube Channels to learn Indian stock market.

Quick Note: There may be a few more good channels that we might miss in this post. This may be because we never watched their videos or the channel is launched recently. If we miss any of your favorite youtube channels feel free to mention in the comment box. We’ll be glad to add it to our list of best youtube channels for Indian Stock Market. 

Nonetheless, you might not synergize with all the channels as they may cover different core areas like fundamentals, technicals or future/options trading strategies. Only subscribe to the channels that suit you the best and whose ideology you would like to follow. So, let’s get started with our list of 10 Best Youtube Channels to Learn Indian Stock Market. Here it goes.

10 Best Youtube Channels to Learn Indian Stock Market

— FinnovationZ

This channel uploads animated financial education videos on stock market tutorials, mutual fund basics, book summaries, case studies, etc. FinnovationZ has uploaded over 320 videos on their channel and had got +41 million views on their videos with +670k subscribers. The videos on this channel are mostly in the Hindi language and very simple to understand. If you are a complete newbie to the stock market, this is a definite channel to subscribe.

— Pranjal Kamra

Also known as Finology, Pranjal Kamra runs this channel and teaches the philosophy of value investing. On his channel, you can find over 130 videos on investing, stock analysis, mutual funds, and behavioral finance. Along with educational videos, Finology also offers courses, workshops, Excel tools, Advisory & research services etc on their website.

— Elearn Markets

With over 550 videos and +210,000 subscribers, Elearn Markets is definitely ranked among one of the best youtube channels to learn Indian stock market. They cover videos on financial literacy, stock market trading, fundamental analysis, technical analysis and more. Besides, one of the most popular segments on their Youtube channel is ‘Meet market rockstars’.

Quick fact: The founders of Elearn markets are also the creator of one of the most downloaded and highest rated stock analysis app in India, named Stockedge.

— Trade Brains

This channel is hosted by Kritesh Abhishek and is focused to teach stock market investing and personal finance to the do-it-yourself (DIY) Investors. On Trade brains youtube channel, you can find simplified investing videos on stock market basics, valuations, mutual funds, investing strategies and much more. You can subscribe to the channel using this link.

— Sunil Miglani

Sunil Minglani is an expert on behavioral aspects of Stock Market and has rich experience in analyzing stock chart patterns which he has co-related with human psychological patterns at a deeper level. He has uploaded over 250 videos on his channel and got over +410k subscribers. On Sunil Miglani’s channel, you can find videos on stock market basics, human psychology, Q&A with Sunil Miglani, etc.

— Nitin Bhatia

Nitin Bhatia is a Youtuber and founder of the blog nitinbhatia.in. On his youtube channel with over +549k subscribers, Nitin Bhatia uploads videos about stock trading & investing, Real Estate and Personal Finance to provide ‘Smart Ideas for Your Money’. He’s very consistent in making videos and has uploaded over 690 videos on his channel.

— Yadnya Investment Academy

This channel uploads simple investing videos in Hindi & English on the stock market, mutual funds, taxes and other investment options in India. The videos are extremely simple to understand. They have uploaded over +720 videos on their youtube channel and received over +190k subscribers. Invest Yadnya also offers different services like financial planning on their website.

— Ghanshyam Tech

This channel is run by Ghanshyam Yadav, a trader and trainer in stock market from Mumbai. This channel focuses on stock market trading and technical analysis. Ghanshyam has uploaded over 1,400 videos on his channel and here you can find videos on Nifty Trading, Technical analysis, Candlestick patterns, charting software and more.

— ProCapital.MohdFaiz

This channel is run by Mohd Faiz and the objective of this channel is to help the subscribers create wealth. Mr. Faiz has uploaded over +4,700 videos on this channel which has received over +95 million views. This channel upload videos on current news, technical analysis, stock charts, patterns and more.

— Varun Malhotra

The host of this channel, Varun Malhotra, Director EIFS, started investing at an age of 17. He dropped out of his Campus placements at IIM-A to continue his journey in the investment world. Since 2010, Varun Malhotra has trained over 500,000 Investors including the entire 250,000 strong force of Border Security Force. On his youtube channel, he uploads videos on stock market investments & mutual funds. Varun Malhotra has uploaded over +45 videos on youtube and earned+225k subscribers.

— Market Gurukul (Bonus)

The marketGurukul channel is managed by Mr. Edward and is one of the best technical analysis youtube channels in Hindi. He uploads videos on Indian Stocks, Commodity or Forex Trading including Trading Psychology, Money Management along with hardcore Technical Analysis. You can find over +170 videos on this channel teaching technical analysis, Strategies, and Indicators to know the markets better, demo trading platform and more.

 

Also read: 7 Must know websites for Indian stock investors

Closing Thoughts:

If you are not from a finance, commerce, business background or from a family of stock market enthusiasts, the chances are that you do not know the stock market lingo or even the frequently used terms like dividends, market cap, etc. Moreover, if you are in the learning stage, it’s a little difficult to master everything by yourself. Enters Youtube.

With the help of youtube channels, you can find online mentors who can help you to make your investing journey a lot easier. Further, interacting with Youtubers is also not very difficult. You can simply leave a comment on the videos and if the Youtuber is active, most likely, you’ll get the reply.

Final advice, watch the videos but do not copy their entire investment strategy or stock picks of the Youtubers. Ideally, Copycat investing doesn’t work. Be original and create your own investment style.

That’s all for this post. I hope it was useful for you. Have a great day and comment below which is your favorite YouTube channel to learn Indian stock market. Happy Investing!

Catching a falling knife stock - Is it worth it cover

Catching a falling knife stock - Is it worth it?

The stock market is filled with all kind of people. Some prefer investing in fast-growing companies while there are others who prefer investing in high dividend-paying stocks. There are also value investor who favors investing in discounted companies. And then comes the daredevil bargain hunters who are eager to invest in falling knife stocks.

In this post, we are going to discuss what exactly are falling knife stocks and why it is dangerous to invest in these type of stocks. We’ll also look into a few strategies that investors can use while trying to catch a falling knife stock.

What are falling knife stocks?

The falling knife is that category of stocks which has undergone a rapid decline in share price in a short amount of time. Here, the term ‘falling knife’ is used as a metaphor for the rapidly declining share price of the company.

Now, by definition, there is so specific ‘magnitude of drop’ or ‘duration’ to define these falling knife stock category. The stock which may fall +50% in a month or +80% in six months, both can be considered in the category of falling knife stocks.

In the investing world, it is always suggested that “Do not try to catch a falling knife!”, especially if you’re a beginner. Anyways, the investors should proceed with great caution if they are interested to invest in these kinds of stocks. In general, these stocks are extremely dangerous and may result in a severe loss if the investor enters at the wrong time.

Note: Even in real-world, trying to catch a falling knife is extremely dangerous and can easily hurt your hand. A thumb rule here is to wait for the knife to fall on the ground and then pick it up. Similarly, if you are planning to invest in a falling knife stock, wait until the prices drop at a significantly lower price with a huge margin of safety.

falling knife example

A few recent examples of falling knife stocks in the Indian market

— Yes Bank: The stocks of Yes Bank has declined over 85% in the time duration between August 2018 to September 2019.

manpasand beverages share price sept 2019 — Manpasan Beverages: The stocks of Manpasand Beverages has declined over 95% in the time duration between May 2018 to September 2019.

yes bank share price sept 2019

— DHFL: The stocks of Deewan Housing Finance Corporate Limited has fallen over 90% in the time duration between September 2018 to September 2019.

dhfl share price sept 2019

If you have already tried catching these falling knives stocks during their downward journey, your portfolio would have been severely hurt by now. However, can these stock rebound and give massive returns to the investor who are planning to enter at this price? The answer to this question requires a lot more comprehensive study than just looking at their share price.

How falling knife stocks work?

The journey of falling knife category stocks is pretty straightforward. Initially, the negative news regarding a company can result in the decline of the share price. However, when the situation continues to degrade, it results in a market panic and subsequent fall in the prices. During such cases, there are two possible outcomes:

  • In a few cases, the share prices may rebound if there is positive news or the company is able to control the damage in the near future. Such scenarios can be extremely profitable for the investors who bought the stock at the discounted price before they bounced back.
  • However, in most cases, the investors may face severe loss even if they bought the stock at a discounted price if the company’s performance continued to weaken. In the worst-case scenario, if the company goes for bankruptcy, the investors may have to lose most of their investments.

Overall, picking such stocks at the near bottom can result in a massive gain. However, entering these companies at the wrong time may lead to a disaster. There are cases when these stocks never rebounded to the original price for decades since they started falling.

Reasons for the Company’s Price to fall:

There can multiple reasons for the company’s share price to decline. Here are a few of the top reasons:

  • A significant decline in revenue and profits for a continued time period.
  • Negative reports and the company continuously missing the market estimates/targets.
  • Deterioration of the company’s fundamentals
  • Discovery of malpractice by the company, fraud charges by SEBI or lawsuits
  • Changes in the management like the resignation of top managers, promoters, etc

Here, if the decline in the price is due to temporary reasons, the long term investor should continue to hold the stock or even buy more. However, if the reason is because of the change in the company’s fundamentals, it’s time to exit, even if you have to book a loss.

Also read: Why is a VALUE TRAP? The Bargain Hunter Dilemma!

Why investors are so much interested in catching falling knife stocks?

Many people find investing in falling knife stocks fascinating because of the following reasons:

  • As the share price of these companies has fallen significantly, they appear to be undervalued. Most investors consider these stocks as an excellent opportunity to purchase the stock before it rebounds to make handsome capital appreciation.
  • People anchor the current price of the company with its original price before it started falling and hence believe them as cheap. However, while anchoring the price, they do not give enough importance to recent events which resulted in the decline of prices.

Anyways, an investor should only buy these stocks if they have fundamental reasons backing the company, not just because the price has fallen significantly.

Also read: 11 Must-Know Catalysts That Can Move The Share Price.

A few points to consider which catching a falling knife stock:

If you are planning to invest in a falling knife stock category, here are a few points that may help you to analyze the situation better and avoid loss:

— Start with analyzing your own behavior: Are you planning to enter that stock because you’re anchoring its current price with its past prices, based on some predictions, or just to gamble.

— Say ‘no’ more often: In most of the falling knife cases, the stock is not profitable to the investors for sustained longer period of time. Although such stocks may seem like a great opportunity, try to say ‘no’ to the stock as much as possible. The more frequently you say ‘no’, the more time you’ll get to study the company and evaluate it better.

— Understand the situation: Read about the recent and past happenings and analyze whether the problem is temporary or structural.

— Do not buy stock on the first decline: There’s a famous Cockroach theory which says that if you find one cockroach in your kitchen, there are more cockroaches likely to be discovered. Similarly, if there’s a piece of bad news related to the company, more is yet to be revealed. Usually, after the first decline, there are more troubles ahead for the company. Therefore, as a thumb rule, do not jump into the stock on the first decline.

— Know the worst-case: Knowing the worst-case scenario can make you prepare for it. Before entering the stock, know how much risk can you handle. Will you be comfortable if your investment value in that stock falls below 70%? What is the risk vs reward for your investment?

— Be pessimistic: While calculating the intrinsic value of the stock, always be pessimistic and take conservative values while estimating the growth rate and estimating the future cash-flows.

— Always have a margin of safety: As these stocks have a higher risk, always have a bigger margin of safety while investing in these companies. For example, if the fair calculated intrinsic value turns out Rs 100, then give yourself a margin of safety of 40% and invest only when the price goes below Rs 60. The higher the margin of safety, the lower will be the risk.

— Diversify — Yes, you want to make big returns and the falling knife stocks seem to have the potential to give higher capital appreciation. However, if because of any reason, let’s say that your study is wrong or the stock didn’t perform the way you supposed it is going to, then you will face critical damage. Therefore, do not put all your money in a single stock, but diversify.

Also read: 5 Psychology Traps that Investors Need to Avoid

Closing Thoughts:

A falling knife stock category may represent a high opportunity, but they also have a higher potential to hurt the investor’s portfolio.

For newbie’s, it’s difficult to judge whether the stock is a value stock or value trap. If you are a beginner and not experienced in judging companies, I would suggest to simply ignore these stocks and try to find fundamentally strong companies.

For experienced investors, if you are planning to purchase them, then know what you’re getting into. Analyze the reward that you may receive by investing in these stocks, but also have the heart to see your investments going down and not making any gains for a long time. You should not expect the stock to bounce bank the very next day or even a month or so when you enter.

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What are the Different Career Options in Indian Stock Market?

The equity market has opened a lot of career opportunities in recent years. This market is getting bigger day by day and the opportunities for employment in the Stock Market are growing every day. People from all backgrounds whether science, commerce or humanities, are showing more and more interest to pursue their careers in Stock Market today.

On one hand, many people are opting to become a financial market participant and work independently. On the other, a significant number of Startups are establishing innovative ideas to create disruption in the Indian Securities Market.

In this post, we are going to discuss a few excellent share market career opportunities in India. Let’s get started.

Different Career Options in Indian Stock Market-

— Stock Broker

As you might already know, if you want to trade or invest in the Stock Market, you must open a trading and Demat Account. These two accounts are offered by stockbrokers. So, given the largely growing investing population of India, you can easily guess how prospective the career as a Stock Broker could be.

For example, If we take of Mr. Nithin Kamath, the founder of Zerodha (discount broker), he started off his career as an Engineer and subsequently started taking interest in the Stock Market. Later, he found the financial market so fascinating that he switched his profession as an engineer to a Stock Broker. In the year 2018, Zerodha, his stockbroking company was awarded the best discount broker entity in India by NSE.

zerodha kamath

Further, in order to become a Stock Broker or open a stockbroking entity, you don’t require a strict eligibility criterion in terms of academics. Nonetheless, you need to clear NISM exams and get your license from the SEBI. Anyways, if you plan to be a Stock Broker, it is important to gain a practical understanding of the Market. So, it is better to work with a Securities Broker for at least 5 years to gain requisite experience if you are willing to start your own venture.

Next, if you want to get employed in a Stock Broking Firm, you will need to clear 12th standard at the minimum. Graduating in Accounting, Economics or Finance will help you start your career from a decent level. Qualifying Post Graduation is not necessary but it might help in fast promotion in the industry. In case you have qualified professional courses like CFA, CA or FRM, no doubt your career path would become really smooth.

(Note: You can read detailed information regarding making a career as a Stock Market Broker here.)

— Financial or Investment Advisor

If you want to start your own consultancy business in the Financial Market, becoming a Financial Advisor or an Investment Advisor is a perspective option.

In recent years, AMFI has been trying hard to bring the income earners in our country to invest in the Mutual Fund industry through their campaign “Mutual fund Sahi hai!”. However, just AMFI is not big enough to educate and convince billions of people in our nation to invest their money in the financial market. As an Investment Advisor, you can reach a plethora of prospective clients.

Preparing customized financial plans, providing consultancy services on wealth management and educating people on financial products can assuredly help you to build a career and make good money in this industry.

To become a Registered Investment Advisor, you will require an education and certification criterion. If you have a graduate degree in Finance/Commerce or at least 5 years of work experience with a financial company, you meet the educational criteria. Note that if you are an engineer with just a B.Tech degree, you do not meet the educational criteria by SEBI. Here, you need work experience in the finance field for at least 5 years or a post-graduate degree in finance.

Anyways, if you are a Post Graduate degree in finance, you won’t require any work experience to apply for your license from SEBI. Further, whether you are a Graduate or a Post Graduate, you mandatorily need to clear the NISM Investment Advisory Certification exam to apply for the SEBI registered Investment advisor. Once you meet all the educational and certification criteria, you can apply to SEBI and get your license. (Note: You can read this post to learn further on how to become an Investment advisor in India.)

Besides, completing CA, CFA or CFP will also help you get the required knowledge you need to render professional services to your clients.

Also read: What is SEBI? And What is its role in Financial Market?

investment advisor

— Research Analyst

Apart from becoming an investment advisor, Equity Research Analyst is also a lucrative career option nowadays. Let us have a brief understanding of this.

Equity Research includes Buy-Side Research and Sell-Side Research. In the case of the former, the researcher work with a financial service organization which directly invests people’s money in the Stock Market. Here, you need to research the stocks to help the Fund Managers make decisions with respect to managing the available financial assets. In the case of Sell-Side Research, the researchers analyze equities and equity derivatives for the clients who are retail traders and investors.

If you want to start your own business as an independent Research Analyst, the eligibility criteria are similar to Investment Advisory option. Further, if you want to take a job as a Research Analyst, the top financial service entities in India look for candidates who are MBA graduates from Tier 1 institutes. Nonetheless, you can also make a career as a Research Analyst if you have completed CFA or CA. (Note: You can read further regarding Equity Research Analyst profession here.)

— Portfolio Management Services (PMS)

If you are a Mutual Fund investor, you might know that your investments are managed by experienced and skilled Portfolio Managers. The Wealth Management firms operating in India handle clients’ money via professionally qualified Fund Managers. Portfolio Management could be an extremely rewarding career if you are good at managing money and have a strong understanding of the Financial Market.

In order to enter this field, you will require professional qualifications like CA, CFA or MBA (Finance). Moreover, if you are a fresher, it is extremely hard to get into this field. Here, you may need experience of at least a decade of working in the Finance domain as you need to grasp the level of maturity of handling assets which amount in crores. Therefore, if you are considering to become a Portfolio Manager, you may first start working in the marketing and research for 5 to 10 years. (Note: Here is a blog that can answer your additional questions on the career as a Portfolio Manager)

Conclusion

In this article, we tried to cover different career options in Indian stock market. Parting advice- if you are planning to make a living from the Stock Market, you need to have an in-depth understanding of the financial world.

Although possessing academics and professional qualifications are necessary but having practical exposure to how the market exactly works is more important. Besides, whichever stock market career option you choose, having strong communication and analytical skills are always add-on advantages.

6 Best Investment Options for NRIs in India

6 Best Investment Options for NRIs in India: Since the last two decades, India has been rapidly developing as an industrial hub. Day after day, our country is attracting more and more foreign direct investment (FDI). Moreover, these days we can see more and more investments coming from the NRIs to the Indian markets. And this is all happening because the Indian economy and government are offering adequate stability and flexibility to the investors. Not only India is conducive for business growth but our economy is also equipped with an extremely profitable financial market.

The year 2018 was not an immeasurable year for investing in the stocks as it witnessed significant bleeding throughout the year. Nonetheless, a similar situation was observed in any other country across the world. However, if you have a look at the year previous to that i.e. 2017, you would find that India’s stock market yielded around 29% return which was relatively higher than any other economy in the world.

Anyways, financial markets are subject to lots of ups and downs. It goes without saying that you need to undertake end-to-end research before you make your investment decision. Nevertheless, whatever investment option you opt for, it should always depend on your financial goals, liquidity requirement, risk appetite and expected returns.

In this post, we are going to discuss a few of the best investment options for NRIs in India which can provide them with adequate returns depending on their goals and needs.

6 Best Investment Options for NRIs in India.

Here are a few solid investment options in India where you can consider investing if you are an NRI.

— Fixed Deposit

Investing in Fixed Deposit is not only popular among the residents in India but also an attractive investment scheme for the NRIs. Being an NRI, you can open your FD with your NRE, NRO, or FCNR Account. All three of these are the types of bank accounts that an NRI can open in India.

Anyways, how much rate of interest will be applicable to your FD depends on the tenure of your deposit. In general, you can expect to earn interest between 6 to 7% on your account balance. Further, if you are a senior citizen, you would get the privilege of earning an extra interest of one percent. Moreover, this investment option is suitable for risk averse investors as FD is a comparatively safer form of investment.

Note: You can read more about the current Fixed Deposit rates in India here.

— Equity

In case you are an aggressive investor, you can consider investing in the equities listed in the Indian market. If you are an NRI, you can directly invest in the Indian stock market under the Portfolio Investment Scheme (PINS) of the RBI.

As an NRI, in order to invest in the stock market in India, you are required to have a bank account (NRE or NRO Account), a trading Account (with a SEBI registered Stock Broker), and a demat account. However, the maximum amount of your investment in the stocks of an Indian company cannot exceed 10% of its paid-up capital.

Further, this is to be noted that, as an NRI, you are not at all permitted to carry out intraday trading and short selling in India. This implies that you need to own the stocks before you can sell them.

— Mutual Fund

These days AMFI is working hard to promote Mutual Funds among the Indian population. Mutual Fund organizations pool money from their investors and then invest the same in the different financial assets. Mutual Funds have moderate risks as they are neither as risky as direct trading in stocks, nor they are as risk-candid as FDs. Further, mutual Fund investments can be highly profitable. There are a plethora of schemes available for Mutual Fund which can choose depending on your risk appetite and financial aspirations.

Anyways, if you are a person residing outside India, you would, unfortunately, face some limitations in mutual fund investing in India because of some rigid FATCA regulations. You are required to have an NRE or NRO Account for investing in the Indian Mutual Fund industry. Furthermore, you also have to invest in Indian rupees and not in any foreign currency.

Note: If you are new to mutual funds, check out our beginner’s resources for Mutual Fund Investing.

— Public Provident Fund (PPF)

A safer form of investment similar to FD is Public provident fund. PPF is an investment alternative which is backed by the Indian Government. Even if you are an NRI, you can invest in PPF. However, here the maximum limit is Rs 1.5 lakh in a financial year.

You can open your PPF account through a post office or through a branch of any nationalized bank in India. Although PPF comes with a lock-in period of 15 years it is definitely more tax efficient than FD. To know more about PPF, you can read this blog on our website.

— National Pension Scheme (NPS)

If you are looking for another tax-efficient investment option, you can even consider investing in NPS (National Pension Scheme). This is also cost-effective, easily accessible, and tax-efficient way to invest your money.

National Pension Scheme is an Indian Government sponsored pension system. If you invest in this instrument, your entire capital during maturity is treated as tax-free. Apart from that, you are not required to pay even a penny to the government as tax on the amount that you withdraw as pension. If you are an NRI aged between 18 and 60 years, you can open an NPS Account to start investing in this scheme. Click here to know more about NPS.

— Real Estate

It’s a fact that there are a lot of NRIs who stay abroad but look to buy their own house in India. Indian population is ever-growing and this is itself paving way for the advancement of Real Estate business in the nation. Being an NRI you can invest in a house property in India from where you can earn handsomely by letting it out to a third party.

However, this is to be noted that, you have to make any such purchases only in Indian rupee. Furthermore, you can’t buy agricultural lands, farmhouses, and plantations in India. Nonetheless, there is no restriction on you to inherit any such property or accepting them as gifts. Check out more on Real Estate investing in this article.

Closing thoughts

In this article, we tried to cover some of the best investment options for NRIs that they can consider if they are  planning to invest their savings in India from abroad.

If you are a profit-loving investor and looking for a long term capital appreciation, you can choose to invest in the Indian stocks or mutual funds. In case you are having a huge corpus, high risk appetite, and high return expectation, you can invest in the real estate sector. Besides, you can invest in an FD if you have a short investment horizon and looking for a guaranteed return. Lastly, you can opt for investing in PPF or NPS if you are willing to earn tax efficient returns and at the same time not bothered to park your money for a longer period of time.

Overall, nn the basis of your priorities, budget and expected returns, you can make a choice of any investing scheme that suits you in the most effective manner. While making any investment in a financial instrument, ensure that you have gone through the relevant documents and understood the salient features of the same.

Our best wishes on your investment journey. Happy investing!

10 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing a Stock - Investment Checklist cover

10 Questions to Ask Before Purchasing a Stock - Investment Checklist!

Picking a winning stock that can give consistent returns for many years requires a lot of analysis and research. However, you can simplify the research process if you have an investment checklist.

Having a reliable checklist for picking stocks can reduce the chances of missing an important detail that you should have studied before investing in the stock. As Charlie Munger, Vice-Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway has famously quoted:

“No wise pilot, no matter how great his talent and experience, fails to use a checklist.” — Charlie Munger

In this post, we are going to discuss ten key questions to ask before purchasing a stock by every stock investor. Let’s get started.

Quick Note: Although there are hundreds of points to check while picking a stock to invest, however, most of them can be categorized among the ten questions listed below. Anyways, by no means, I claim that this is the best checklist for picking stocks. My suggestion would be to study the investment checklist given below, improvise and make your own list of questions. Further, for simplicity, I’ve not included financial ratios.

10 Questions to ask before purchasing a stock.

Here are the ten key questions that every investor should ask before investing in a stock.

1. What does the company do?

What are the products/services that the company offers? Do you understand the company’s business model? How does the company actually make money? What are the top/best-selling products of the company?

2. Who runs the company?

Who are the promoters/owners of the company? It the company a family-owned or professionally managed one? Who is managing the company? What are the credentials/background of CEO, MD, Board of directors and the management team? What is the shareholding pattern of the company?

3. Is the company profitable?

How much profits did the company generated in the last few years? How are the company’s gross, operating and net profit and what is the profit margin at each level? Is the profit of the company growing over time or stagnant/declining?

4. Does the company have a sustainable competitive advantage?

Does the company have a moat like intangible assets, customer switching cost, network effect, cost advantages or any other sustainable competitive advantage that can keep the competitors away from eating their profits?

5. How was the past performance of the company?

How is the company’s financials in the past few years? What’s the trend in the company’s income statement and cash flow statement? How are the sales, EBITDA, Cash from operating activities, free cash flow and other financial metrics over the past few years?

6. How strong is the company’s balance sheet?

Are the assets of the company growing over time? How much is the liability of the company? Is the company’s shareholder equity increasing? How much cash does the company have on the asset side? How much is the company’s Intangible assets, Inventories, Receivables, Payables and more? Does the company invest in its Research & Development, especially in a few sectors like Technology, Pharmaceutical, etc?

7. Was the management involved in past fraud or scams?

Was the company’s promoters or management involved in any past scam? Does the company has any history of cheating the shareholders or any past penalty by SEBI?

8. Who are the key competitors?

Who are the direct and indirect competitors of the company? What is the market share of the company vs the competitors in the industry? What this company is doing differently compared to its competitors? Are there any global competitors or the possibility of global leaders entering the same market anytime soon?

9. How much debt the company has?

How much short-term and long-term debt the company has? Does the company generate enough profits or Free cash flow to cover the debt in the upcoming years? Have the promoters pledged any of their shares?

10. How is the stock valued?

What is the true intrinsic value of the company? Is the company currently over-valued, under-valued or decently valued? Is the company relatively undervalued compared to the competitors and industry? What is the calculated intrinsic value by different valuation method? How much is the margin of safety? Will you be overpaying if you buy the stock right now?

Also read: How To Select A Stock To Invest In Indian Stock Market For Consistent Returns?

Closing Thoughts:

Although getting a recommendation or investing where friend/colleague suggested may land you into a few profitable deals. But if you want to make consistent returns from the market (and not just being lucky), you need to build your own trustable investing strategy.

It’s true that picking a winning stock required a tremendous amount of research. However, having an investment checklist of questions to ask before investing in stock significantly reduce the chances of investing in fundamentally weak stocks. Moreover, you can easily eliminate over 90% of the companies that don’t meet your checklist.

I hope the questions discussed in this post is helpful to you. If I missed any additional important to ask before purchasing stock in this investment checklist, feel free to mention below in the comment box.

That’s all. Have a great day and Happy Investing!

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21 Do’s and Don’ts of Stock Market Investing for Beginners

Making money from stocks is simple if you strictly follow the do’s and don’ts of stock market investing. However, because of the lack of financial education, the majority of the investing population do what they are not supposed to ‘do’ in the market and vice-versa.

For example, the first and foremost rule to invest intelligently in stocks is to ‘not speculate’, but invest only after proper research. However, most people speculate in stocks and bet that the share price will go high in the upcoming days without any significant analysis.

In this post, we are going to discuss the do’s and don’t of stock market investing for beginners. Let’s get started.

21 Do’s and Don’ts of Stock Market Investing for beginners.

Do’s of Stock Market Investing

Here are a few of the do’s of stock market investing that every investor should follow:

1. Get an education

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This is probably the most relevant do’s of stock market investing. If you really want to become a successful stock investor, start learning the market.

It doesn’t mean that you should enroll in a college program/degree. Self-education is the best way to learn. There are tons of free information available on the internet which you access to learn the market. Moreover, if you want to get a head-start, you can also enroll in a few good online stock market investing courses. Let the learning begin.

2. Start small

If you are just starting to learn how to swim, you won’t jump in 8 ft deep water, right? Similarly, when beginning to start investing in the stock market, start small. Invest the lowest possible amount and gradually increase your investments as you get more knowledge and confidence.

3. Get started early

I cannot emphasize enough on the importance of getting started soon with your finances. Time is in your favor when you start investing early. Moreover, here you get enough time to recover even if you make some losses during the early time of your investment journey.

Also read: Bunty and Babli: A financial story of how Bunty lost Rs 1,29,94,044!

4. Research before investing

One of the key reasons why people do not make money from stocks is that they do not put the initial efforts before investing in the share. Every investor needs to research the company before investing. Here you need to learn the company’s fundamentals, financial statements, ratios, management and more. If you do not want to regret later, research the company first before investing.

Also read: How To Select A Stock To Invest In Indian Stock Market For Consistent Returns?

5. Only invest what is surplus:

The stock market gives an immense opportunity to invest in your favorite companies and make money. However, there are always a few risks involved in the market, and no returns are guaranteed. Moreover, many times a bad (or bear market) may even last for years. Therefore, you should only invest the surplus money which does not affect your lifestyle even if you can’t get it out.

6. Have an investment goal

It’s easier to plan your investments (and to monitor your progress) if you have an investment goal/plan. Your goal may be to build a corpus of Rs 10 Crores in the next ten years or to build a retirement fund. Having a goal will keep you motivated and on track.

7. Build a stock portfolio

For making good consistent money from the stock market, just having two or three stocks is not enough. You need to build a winning stock portfolio of 8–12 stocks which can give you reliable returns.

Although it’s very less likely that you can find all the fantastic stocks to invest at once. However, year-after-year you can keep adding/removing stocks to build a strong portfolio that can help you reach your goals.

8. Average out:

It’s challenging to time the market and almost impossible to buy the stock at the exact bottom and sell them at the highest point. If you’ve done it, you might be lucky. A better approach here is to Buy/Sell in ‘steps’ (unless you find an amazing opportunity which the market offer sometimes).

9. Diversify

“Do not put all your eggs in one basket!”. The risk involved while investing in just one stock is way higher compared to a portfolio of ten stocks. Even if one or two of your stock starts performing poorly in the later scenario, it may not affect the entire portfolio too much. Your stock portfolio should be sufficiently diversified.

10. Invest for the long-term

It’s a common fact that all the veterans of the stock market who made an incredible fortune from stocks are long term investors. But why do long-term investing helps to build wealth? Because of the power of compounding, the eighth wonder of the world. If you want to build massive wealth from the market, invest for the long-term.

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11. Hold the winners, cut the losers

Cut you losing stocks if they underperform for a long time and hold your winning stocks longer to allow them to offer even better returns. This is the golden mantra of investing that you should strictly follow. Moreover, keeping your winners and cutting losers will also help in building your dream portfolio.

Also read: The Biggest Investing Mistake that 90% Beginners Make!

12. Invest consistently

Most people get excited and enter the stock market when the market is doing well, and the indexes are touching new highs. However, if you only invest in a bull market and exit when the market is down i.e. when stocks are selling at discount, you will never find fantastic opportunities to pick cheap stocks.

Do not invest in the market just for a year. If you want to make good money from stocks, invest consistently and periodically increase your investment amount.

13. Have Patience

Most stocks take at least 1–2 years to give good returns to the investors. Moreover, the performances get better when you give more time. Have patience while investing in the share market and do not sell your stocks too soon for short term gratification.

Don’ts of Stock Market Investing:

14. Don’t take investing as gambling

Let me repeat this in simple words- “INVESTING IS NOT GAMBLING!”. Do not buy any random stock and expect it to give you two times return in a month.

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Also read: 5 Signs That You are Gambling in Stocks.

15. Don’t invest blindly on free tips/recommendations

The moment you open your trading account, you’ll start getting free messages on your phone with BUY/SELL calls. But remember, there is no FREE lunch in this world. Why would anyone send a stranger free tips for multi-bagger stocks? Never invest blindly on free tips or recommendations that you receive, no matter how appealing they may sound.

16. Don’t have unrealistic expectations:

Yes, many lucky guys in the market have made 400–500% return on their single investment. However, the truth is that these kinds of news get quickly circulated (and inflated).

Have realistic expectations while investing in stocks. A return between 12–18% in a year is considered good in the market. Moreover, when you compound this return over multiple years, you will get way higher returns compared to 3.5% interest on your savings account.

Further, do not assume that you can get the same profits as others, who might be investing in stocks from many past years and may have acquired an amazing skill set. You can also get similar returns, but only after enough knowledge and practice.

17. Don’t over trade

When you are trading frequently, you are repeatedly paying for the brokerage and other charges. Don’t buy/sell the stocks too often. Take confident decisions and make transactions only when necessary.

18. Don’t follow the herd

Your colleague purchased a stock and made 67% returns from it within a year. Now, he’s boasting about it, and many of your office-mates are buying that stock. What would you do next? Should you buy the stock? Wrong!

No investor can get significant success from the market by following the herd. Do your own research, rather than following the crowd.

stock market meme 17

19. Avoid psychological biases/traps

There are a lot of physiological biases while investing that can adversely affect your investment decisions and your ability to make effective choices. For example- Confirmation Bias, Anchoring bias, Buyer’s Remorse, Superiority trap, etc.

Most of these biases are pre-programmed in human nature, and hence it might be a little difficult to notice them by the individuals. Anyways, knowing these biases can help you to avoid them causing any serious damage. Moreover, a good thing regarding these biases is that — like any habit, you can change or get over them by practice and efforts.

Also read: 5 Psychology Traps that Investors Need to Avoid!

20. Don’t take unnecessary risks

Investing all your money in a hot stock/industry to get a little higher return is never a wise move. Safeguarding your money is equally important than getting high returns. You should never take unnecessary risks while investing in stocks and your ‘risk-reward’ should always be balanced.

21. Don’t make emotional decisions

The human mind is very complex, and there are many factors both internal and external that can affect the choices we make. While investing in the stock market, do not take emotional decisions. No matter how much you like a company, if it is not profitable and doesn’t have a bright future potential, it may not be the right investment decision. Do not get emotional while making your investment decisions.

stock market meme 23

Bottom line

In this post, I tried to cover the do’s and don’ts of stock market investing for beginners. However, this is just a guide and not a manual. You will learn more do’s and don’t through your personal experiences when you start investing on your own.

I hope this article is useful to you. Have a great day and happy investing!

7 Powerful New Year Resolutions For Stock Market Investors

7 Powerful New Year Resolutions For Stock Market Investors!

7 Powerful New Year Resolutions For Stock Market Investors!

A new year always excites everyone. It’s time for the people to make different personal and professional resolutions like to learn a new skill, learn how to swim, join the gym, try martial arts, create a new blog, explore a new language/country, start maintaining a journal, etc.

I’ve always loved new years and enjoyed making plans for the next year. This time also I’ve made a few resolutions. Professionally, this year I’m planning to expand my team, add new interactive features to our android app and become more active on Youtube. Personally, at the top of the list is to travel to three new countries and learn the Spanish language by the end of 2020.

Anyways, stock investors are ordinary people and hence, they also like to make resolutions for their new investing journey. However, if you an equity investor but do not have made resolutions for the new year yet, then we’ve got you covered.

In this post, we are going to discuss seven powerful new year resolutions for equity investors. All these resolutions are designed to make you a better investor by the end of the calendar year.

7 Powerful New Year Resolutions For Equity Investors

Here are the seven best new year resolutions for the Indian equity investors. I would recommend you to challenge yourself and accept as many resolutions (out of seven) as possible.

1. Save enough, Invest more

This is something that most youngsters struggle with. Although the older generation is doing much better in the art of saving, however, when it comes to intelligent investing — they too are not much mature.

If you are struggling with savings, plan to optimize your expenses this year. Track your spendings and perfect them wherever possible in order to increase your savings. However, do not just stop there. Invest those savings in different investment options based on your needs and risk tolerance. For beginners, investing in blue-chip stocks are a good option to get started.

2. Start goal-based investing

investment goal

Goal-based investing is a new way of wealth management where the individuals focus on attaining specific objectives or life-goals through their investments. Here, before starting to invest, the individual tries to answer the question- “What exactly are you investing for?”. The best part about goal-based investing is that here the investors do not focus on getting the highest possible returns. But the aim of this investment is to reach the desired returns that meet their goals.

This year, switch from the traditional investing to goal-based investing. Set a specific goal and start investing to achieve it. This goal can be owning your new house, funding your business venture, corpus for your kid’s education/marriage, retirement, travel fund, etc.

3. Increase your circle of competence

circle of competence

Because of different background, qualification, or experience, everyone has built up a greater knowledge in a specific area. In this certain field, these people have the expertise and hence, have a significant advantage. This is called the circle of competence.

The circle of competence might vary from people to people depending on the criteria mentioned above. For example, a doctor might have expertise in medicines, healthcare or pharmaceutical and he can consider this area as his circle of competence (COC).

This year, make a resolution to increase your circle of competence.

For example, let’s say you might have been ignoring tax saving mutual funds or ELSS or any other investment option just because you were not competent earlier. But this year, spend some time and effort to get comfortable in those investments.

Even for stock investors, there might be different industries or sectors that you may be ignoring. This can be because you do not have good knowledge of that industry and hence not inside your circle of competence. This year, learn those new industries and expand your circle of competence.

4. Be consistent

Consistency is the key to build long-term wealth. If you invest in equities just in a bull market and shy off during the bear market, it’s definitely not a good strategy. Bulls and bears are the part of the market and stocks are characterized to go up and down.

This year, make a resolution to become consistent in your investments.

If you have got a monthly SIP, then consistently keep investing in that plan. If you are a direct stock investor, then fix an allocation of money that you’ll invest in the market throughout the year, whenever you find the best opportunities. Overall, to win the game, you need to stay in the game. And that’s why you need to be consistent in your investment plans.

5. Become more Socially Responsible Investor

Socially Responsible Investing or SRI is choosing to invest in stocks that provide a financial gain as well as do social good. For example- investing in companies promoting health, cleaner energy, healthy foods, etc. The companies are evaluated based on the ESG index: environment, social justice, and corporate governance.

Being an investor gives you a lot of power in the financial world. This year, make a resolution to realize the power and influence you have as share investors to make a positive impact on society.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) - What does it actually mean cover

6. Continue your education

The stock market is very dynamic and things keep on changing very fast here. New technology, a new sector, new research tool, etc. And that’s why the biggest resolution that you need to make this year is to continue your education.

This doesn’t mean to go and enroll in a university. You simply have to keep learning more. Whether it’s through courses, seminars, workshops, books or youtube videos, it’s up to you. But make sure that you keep on learning. One best way to continue your education is by taking a resolution to read at least one investing book each month. This is not a tough resolution and easily achievable. If you are not sure which books to read, here is a list of ten must-read books for stock market investors.

7. Diversify to other investments

This is the last resolutions to make this year. No matter how good you are in equities, do not invest all your money in the market. Stock market investments are subjected to market risk. And if you’ve allocated all your money in the market and it doesn’t perform well (because of whatever reason)– you are doomed.

This year, make a resolution to expand your investment options and look into alternative investment options. Maybe investing in real estate or diving into startups as Angel investor. Diversify your investments and reduce the potential risks.

Closing Thoughts

The new year is the best time to ‘make the change’ or ‘be the change’. Whether you want to meet your needs/goals or become a better investor, this is a great time to start working on it. Through the new year resolutions, take your investing to the next level this year. I wish you all the best and a happy new year 2020!

Dividend Growth Investing - A Beginner's Guide

Dividend Growth Investing – A Beginner’s Guide

In this article, we are going to discuss Dividend Growth Investing. First of all, if you are not familiar with the meaning of dividends and want to learn what exactly are dividends, their pros and cons, please read this article. I’m confident that it will be helpful to you.

Today, we’ll take our earlier dividend investing discussion to the next level and understand what exactly is dividend ‘growth’ investing and why it is an amazing tool to make money from the share market for the passive investors. Here are the topics that we’ll discuss in this article:

What is Dividend Growth Investing? And how it differs from Dividend Investing?

Dividend investing in an old and proven formula for receiving money from your investments and building wealth. It means buying shares of those companies which pay good dividends.

When you invest in dividend stocks, you get this money directly credited in your bank account as dividends. By purchasing stocks, you’re a shareholder of that company. And hence you can enjoy the hard work of the CEOs and their employees of big corporations and earn dividends.

Next, dividend growth investing is a sub-set of dividend investing. However, the major difference is that here investors not just look at the high dividend-paying companies but also at the growth rate of the dividends and the company.

As growth is the measure of financial health, Dividend growth investing involves collecting the shares of fundamentally strong companies with a high annual dividend growth rate. As a thumb rule, the growth rate should be equal to or higher than inflation.

For example, if a company gave a dividend of Rs 10 per share last year, Rs 11 per share this year and expected to give a dividend of Rs 12.5 per share in the next year, this company can fall into this category. Anyways, the dividend growth investors look at more than at least five years of growth history while picking the stocks. Moreover, the dividend growth will not always be a linear curve but will be full of ups and downs. Nevertheless, the overall trend of dividend growth should be positive.

In short, the dividend growth investors do not want just a high dividend but growing dividends over time.

dividend growth investing stocks

Dividend Growth Stocks Characteristics

In which scenario will you be able to sleep better?

Knowing that you’re getting high dividends right now, but the dividends may fall in the future as the company is saturated. Or, the other scenario where you are getting decent dividends and have confidence that it will pay more dividends in the future as the company is continuously growing its revenue and profit.

A few characteristics of the Dividend Growth Stocks are:

  1. A strong business model with a well-managed and reliable board of directors.
  2. History of a shareholder-friendly company i.e. a company with regular dividends and no dividend cuts.
  3. Dividends continuously growing for the past few years.
  4. Strong Financials: Continous healthy growth in Topline and the Bottom line of the company’s income statement and cashflows.

These are the signs that reflect the company’s ability to grow and maintain solid cash flow to give regular dividends to its investors.

Examples of Dividend Growth Investing Stocks

For example, if you want to understand dividend growth investing, here are the examples of a few stocks whose dividends have been continuously growing for the past couple of years:

NameLast Market PriceMarket Cap (in Crores)Mar-14Mar-15Mar-16Mar-17Mar-18Mar-19
National Aluminum Co.₹42.35₹7,901.00 ₹1.50₹1.25₹2.00₹2.10₹4.28₹4.16
Bharat Petroleum₹492.00₹1,06,727.00 ₹5.67₹7.50₹10.34₹21.68₹19.05₹17.24
Vedanta₹147.15₹54,699.00 ₹3.25₹4.10₹3.50₹19.45₹21.20₹18.85
Hero MotoCorp₹2,308.00 ₹46,108.00 ₹65.00₹60.00₹72.00₹85.00₹95.00₹87.02
Tata Steel Ltd₹421.00₹47,431.00 ₹10.00₹8.00₹8.00₹10.00₹10.00₹13.00
Infosys₹714.00₹3,04,054.00 ₹15.57₹15.83₹12.97₹13.77₹22.01₹21.70
Bajaj Auto₹3,220.00 ₹93,188.00 ₹50.00₹50.00₹55.00₹55.00₹60.00₹60.00
Tata Chemicals₹654.00₹16,661.00 ₹10.00₹12.50₹10.00₹11.00₹22.00₹12.50
Hindustan Zinc₹206.25₹87,147.00 ₹3.50₹4.40₹27.80₹29.40₹8.00₹20.00
Power Grid₹186.95₹97,805.00 ₹2.58₹1.31₹2.31₹4.35₹5.25₹8.63
This table shows the Adj. Dividends Per Share for the given stocks from 2014-19 | (Data Source: EquityMaster)

Benefits of Dividend Growth Investing

We all know that holding good stocks for the long term can help build a huge portfolio. But what if we get regular dividends along with it. This can reduce the burden of timely selling your stocks to book profit. As dividends are continuously pumped in your account, you do not have to worry about the stock market price fluctuations. Moreover, here dividend re-investing can create wonders.

Here are a few of the common benefits of dividend growth investing:

  1. Dividend growth investing can be a major source to build long-term wealth to create passive returns.
  2. They can help you to get returns no matter how stocks are performing. And hence, dividend growth investing helps to avoid the biggest threat of getting no returns because of stock underperformance.
  3. Investors also get tax benefits while investing in dividends. It helps in minimizing taxes as dividend tax rates are lower compared to the regular capital gain taxes. Dividend earning up to Rs 10 lakhs is taxfree in India.

How to get started with Dividend Growth Investing?

There is a common misconception that high dividend yield means high returns. However, this may not be true and sometimes high yield may also represent a depressed stock.

Dividend Yield vs Dividend Growth:

Dividend yield = Dividend per share / Stock price per share

High dividend yield can be either because of an increased dividend payout or decreased share price. If the yield is high because the share price of that company has fallen significantly, it may also represent a value trap. Here, the stock may appear as a value stock because of low valuation. However, the main reason for its low valuation can be its poor performance or bad future prospects. Overall, high yield doesn’t refect a fundamentally strong dividend stock.

Further, also check the dividend payout while researching dividend growth stocks. Payout should be sustainable and growing. If a company offers a solid record of increasing payout per share on an annual basis, it is way better than a company giving a high dividend for just that year.

Dividend payout = Dividends per share / Earnings per share

As a thumb rule, a very high dividend payout is dangerous as it means that the company is giving away the majority of its profits as dividends and not retaining enough. A company generally distributes the majority of profits only when it does not have much growth investment opportunities. Typically, a payout ratio of more than 80–85% may reflect a dividend fall or cut in the near future.

Also read: How to Plan Your Passive Income The Right Way?

Summary

Dividend growth investing is an insanely powerful way to build passive wealth by investing in stocks. Moreover, as most dividend growth investors are long term investors, time is their best friend. A few common factors to check while investing in dividend growth stocks are dividend yield, payout ratio, and dividend growth rate. Apart, the company should also be well-managed and should have a decent financial growth rate.

5 Types of Stocks That Every Investor Should Know

5 Types of Stocks That Every Investor Should Know:

There are thousands of stocks publicly listed in the Indian stock market. And researching them one-by-one to pick the one that suits you the best may take weeks. That’s why these stocks are divided into different categories to help investors/traders classify these stocks to help them study better.

Stocks may be categorized based on different factors like their size, industry, location, etc. In this article, we are going to discuss five popular types of stocks that every investor should know.

5 Types of Stocks That Every Investor Should Know

— Based on Company Size (Market Capitalization)

To classify stocks based on their size, we use Market capitalization or market cap.

Market Capitalization refers to the total rupee value of the company’s share. It is calculated by multiplying the total number of shares by its present market share price.

Here, according to the size of the company, companies can be broadly divided into large-cap, mid-cap, and small-cap stocks. In general, the commonly accepted classification of companies based on their market capitalization in the Indian stock market is:

  1. Market cap Less than 8,500 Cr → Small cap
  2. Market cap Between 8,500 Cr to 28,000 Cr → Mid Cap
  3. Market cap Greater than 28,000 Cr → Large-cap

Note: You can read more about Small cap, Mid Cap and Large Cap Companies here.

Here are two more types of stocks based on the size that you should know:

  • Penny Stocks: Those stocks which trade at a very low market price (less than Rs 10) and have a very low market capitalization (typically under 100 crores) are called penny stocks in the Indian stock market. Penny stocks are the darlings of new investors. The low market price of these stocks makes them quite attractive to beginners.
  • Blue-chip stocks: Blue chip companies are large and well-established companies with a history of consistent performance. These companies are financially strong (usually debt-free or very low debts) and are capable to survive in tough market situations. Most of the blue-chip companies are the market leaders in their industry. A few of the common examples of blue-chip companies in India are HDFC Bank, ITC, Asian Paints, Maruti Suzuki, etc.

In addition, the stocks may also be classified as Mega-caps and Micro-caps based on their size. However, they are not frequently used.

— Based on Industry

Stocks are often categorized based on the sector or industry they fall like— Automobile stocks, Energy stocks, Technology stocks, etc. For example — all the companies that are related to automobiles will be considered as automobile stocks. Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland, Hero Motocorp, etc.

However, sometimes it might be a little difficult to quickly classify companies when their business model lies in two or more industries. For example, ITC Limited is a conglomerate, although it generates more than sixty percent of their revenue from tobacco products.

— Based on the Business Cycle

Based on the business cycles, the stocks can be classified as Cyclicals or Non-cyclical (Defensive) stocks.

  1. Cyclical Stocks: As the name suggests, cyclical stocks are those that move in the direction of the market. That is when the economy is doing well, the stocks go up and when there is a downturn in the economy, the value of the stock goes down too. Cyclical industries usually may include services like automobile, construction, travel and tourism, luxury products, etc.
  2. Non-Cyclical/Defensive stocks: The revenue and cash-flows and share price of non-cyclical companies continue to do well during an economic slow-down or depression as they are industries that produce the basic needs of life that people will continue to consume. Defensive stocks include goods and services in industries that are not affected by market fluctuations such as utilities, food, and medicines. It is basically any good or service that people will buy whether or not the economy is doing well. Moreover, Tobacco, Alcohol producing companies may fall into this category as people continue to consume these products even during a bad economy.

Also read: Cyclical and Non-cyclical stocks: How do they differ?

— Based on Investment Style

Based on the buying or investment style, stocks can be classified as growth stocks, value stocks and dividend stocks.

  1. Growth stocks: We can define a growth stock as a company that is growing at a very fast rate compared to its industry or market index. The share prices of these companies appreciate at a fast pace and the investors are ready to pay high prices for these companies to compensate for the faster growth.
  2. Value Stocks: The concept of value investing was famously introduced by Benjamin Graham, the mentor of Warren Buffett, back in the 1930s in his famous book ‘The Intelligent Investor’. A value stock has completely different characteristics than the growth stocks. These companies do not have a high growth rate, rather they grow slow. However, these stocks trade at a low (discounted) market price compared to their true/intrinsic value.
  3. Dividend Stocks: This is the third way to invest apart from the value stocks and growth stocks. An income stock approach is investing in those stocks which pay a high, regular and increasing dividend. The high dividend yield of these stocks mostly generates consistent returns for passive investors.

Also read: Growth Stocks vs Value stocks – A logical Comparison

— Based on Location

Finally, companies can also be classified based on where they are located. If the company is located in the same country as the investors, it is considered domestic stock. Otherwise, it will be regarded as International stocks. A lot of investors invest based on categories like the International market stocks, emerging market stocks, etc to diversify their portfolio.

Also read: 3 Easy Ways to Invest in Foreign Stocks From India.

Closing Thoughts

As discussed in this article, stocks can be classified in different types based on their characteristics. A few of the popular types of stocks that every investor should know are –

  1. Based on Size: Large caps, Mid caps, and Small caps,
  2. Based on Industry: Automobile stocks, Pharma Stocks, IT Stocks, etc.
  3. Based on Business Cycle: Cyclical and Non-cyclical,
  4. Based on Style: Growth stocks, Value stocks, Income stocks,
  5. Based on Location: International stock, Emerging markets, etc.

Classifying stocks makes it easier for investors to study the companies based on their preferences. That’s all for this article. Please comment below if you’ve any queries. I’ll be happy to help. Happy Investing.

What is the TOWS Matrix? And how it is used?

What is the TOWS Matrix? And how it is used?

What is the TOWS Matrix? And how it is used?

Apple, Amazon, and Google — we all have heard the renowned names of these gigantic companies and are quite familiar with their products. They have been sustaining through the zig-zags of an economy and have successfully created a brand value since their establishment.  All three companies must have done something right which helped them to stay in the game for the long run, unlike other companies that couldn’t sustain or, have fizzled out. In order to find out the answers to such statements, analysts take the help of marketing strategies.  Today, we will discuss one such theory called TOWS Matrix to find out the awaited answers. Well, without further adieu, put on your reading glasses and jump in!

TOWS Matrix can be interpreted as a framework to assess, create, compare, and finally decide upon the business strategies. It is a modified version of a SWOT analysis and is an abbreviation that stands for Threats, Opportunities, Weaknesses, Strength. It was invented by an American business professor called Heinz Weirich in 1982 to examine businesses from a practical approach in reference to administration and marketing. The evaluation is done by amalgamating the external opportunities and threats with a company’s internal strengths and weaknesses.

What is the TOWS Matrix?

TOWS Matrix begins with an audit of external threats and opportunities. Such scrutiny gives a clear insight and helps to adopt long term strategies. Thereafter, the internal strengths and weaknesses of a company are taken into consideration. In the next stage, the internal analysis gets intertwined with external analysis to devise a strategy.

TOWS Analysis goes way beyond the conventional SWOT Analysis and aids organizations to remain one step ahead in the ever-changing competitive landscape. The TOWS Matrix can also help in the generation of amazing ideas in relation to fruitful marketing strategies, decision-making, protection against threats, opportunities, diminishing threats, overcoming weaknesses and awareness regarding potential shortcomings.

tows matrix analysis

Although internal and external factors are incompatible features, there still exists a balance between them. Strengths and Weaknesses fall under internal factors and consist of HR policies, manufacturing processes, goals and objectives, attributes of the products and services offered to the target market, core values, work culture, staff, and fundamentals of the company.

On the contrary, Opportunities, and Threats fall under external factors and consists of government policies, dynamic nature of the market, evolving tastes and preferences of the customers, competition in the market, fluctuation rates of the raw materials required for the production and etcetera.

Now, we will move on to the discussion where we will discuss the four potential strategies of the TOWS Matrix. The four TOWS strategies are :

  • Strength/Opportunity (SO)
  • Weakness/Opportunity (WO)
  • Strength/Threat (ST)
  • Weakness/Threat (WT)

Strengths and Opportunities (SO) / Maxi-Maxi Strategy

The aim of a Maxi-Maxi Strategy is to utilize internal strengths to make optimum use of the external opportunities available to the company. In other words, the company has to utilize the strengths by using its resources to cash in on potential opportunities.

For example, if a  company has reasonably established a brand name in the market and has won the hearts of the consumers, there lies a golden opportunity to explore the new market locations or introducing a new line of products and services for the same target market. Such a step can turn out to be the best for the upliftment of the firm.

TOWS Matrix internal external

(Image Credits: B2U)

Strengths and Threats (ST) / Maxi-Mini Strategy

The aim of a Maxi-Mini strategy is to maximize the strengths of a company while minimizing the threats with the support of these strengths. Thus, a company should take advantage of the internal strengths to avoid massive external threats. This strategy indicates that the management of the organization can employ all the internal strengths to counter any of the possible threats that can come in the way of the business as obstacles.

Example: In the market, there is always a cut-throat competition amongst peers or, between new and old entrants. In such a scenario, to beat the competition, the lagging company needs to take advantage of the internal strengths such as quality, manufacturing techniques, legacy and customer service.

Weakness and Opportunities (WO) / Mini-Maxi Strategy

The Mini-Maxi strategy attempts to minimize the weaknesses and to maximize the opportunities. The aim is to revamp internal weaknesses by making use of external opportunities. The management of the company will detect various alternatives to look past the weaknesses and take control of the opportunities that come up in the course. It is always a wise decision to decline or correct the weaknesses and untap the opportunities.

Example: If the company doesn’t possess any expertise in any of the business domains which is necessary for the growth and is gifted an opportunity to ally with another company that has the needed expertise, it works as a fairly convenient situation for both the companies.

Weakness and Threats (WT) / Mini-Mini Strategy

The aim of the Mini-Mini strategy is to minimize weaknesses and minimize threats. This is definitely the most defensive spot in the TOWS Matrix. It is mostly utilized when a company is in a  deplorable position. In such a scenario, the company operates in an aggressive environment and has little or no development opportunities. The mini-mini strategy is nothing but a pessimistic style of liquidation of a company.

EXAMPLE: A company has lost its shine and glory and has lost the faith of the stakeholders. Thus, there exists a threat of losing out on funding and investment by investors. In this case. it might close down poor-selling products, cut down underperforming employees and build a hostile technique of selling. If optimistic, the company might look for merging with another suitable company to leverage its expertise and resources for hanging on to funding.

TOWS Matrix – Apple INC

apple steve jobs

Let us now apply these four strategies of TOWS Analysis to a famous company called Apple.

Apple Inc. is an American multinational organization specialized in technology and has its headquarters in Cupertino, California. Apple fabricates, builds and sells computer software, electronic products, and online services. The tech giant was established by Steve Jobs,  Ronald Wayne, and Steve Wozniak in April 1976. It is considered as the world’s largest technology company by means of revenue and is also one of the world’s most valuable companies.

According to statistics, it is the world’s third-largest mobile phone manufacturer after Samsung and Huawei. Apple’s renowned products consist of the iPad tablet computers, HomePod smart speaker, iPod portable media player, iPhone smartphone, Mac personal computer, Apple Watch smartwatch, AirPods wireless earbuds, and Apple TV digital media player. The online services provided by Apple are iTunes Store, Mac App Store, Apple TV+, iCloud, Apple Music, the iOS App Store, and  Apple TV+. In Fiscal YEAR 2018, the worldwide revenue of Apple totaled to $265 billion.

The strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of Apple are mentioned below. After glancing through them, we will begin performing our TOWS Matrix according to the rule.

— Strengths

  1. Apple is known as a Market leader and thus, maintains a high standard across several products and services. It is the most trusted brand in the entire marketplace.
  2. It has a strong brand image and thus helps the audience to differentiate Apple from other competitors and positively influences the purchasing decisions.
  3. It possesses extensive financial strength and thus has higher profitability and liquidity.
  4. Apple has also a highly innovative and highly sophisticated supply chain which helps in maintaining efficiency.
  5. It also has High-profit margins because of the consistent sales of its popular products.
  6. The premium quality of its products allows Apple to enjoy a large and loyal customer base.

— Weakness

  1. Apple Products are not priced by keeping the competition in mind and can be afforded by a certain section or class.
  2. There is an availability of a narrow product range compared to its competitors.
  3. The products and services are only compatible with Apple products and are incompatible with the products of other brands.

— Opportunities

  1. There is a constant rise in demand and craze for mobile devices irrespective of the quoted price.

— Threats

  1. In spite of being market leaders, there has been an emergence of competitors.
  2. The cost of manufacturing has been constantly on the rise.
  3. There has been also a decline in the market share of Apple due to the falling demand of Laptops and Personal Computers.

— Strengths and Opportunities (SO) of Apple:

Since there has been an increase in demand for mobile devices, the company should increase its focus by concentrating on manufacturing and marketing to generate profit. Apple should also leverage its brand value and financial strength to enter into new products and consequently increase their sales and profit. Such a step will aid Apple benefit from its existing customer base and customer loyalty. Further, if it partners with other brands to mass-produce compatible products and create mutually advantageous relationships, it will highly assist Apple in hack into the customer base of other brands.

— Strengths and Threats (ST) of Apple:

Apple should build a diversified range of products to fabricate its customer base and diminish the pressure of competitiveness. Another most important point is to consider the cultural variance to retain the competitive advantage created by  Steve Jobs.

— Weakness and Opportunities (WO) of Apple

Since Apple has only high-end products, it should release a cluster of products at an affordable price to make it feasible for middle-class consumers. Creating a larger product sets and thereby, entering into a new product arena will also help Apple to serve new customer segments.

— Weaknesses and Threats (WT) of Apple

Releasing a range of competitively priced products to attract middle-class customers can change the scenario altogether to reduce the pressure from competitors. It should also widen the product sets and try to cash in on the capability of the existing supply chain to decrease the manufacturing costs.

Also read:

Advantages & Disadvantages of TOWS Analysis

We will now elaborate on the major pros and cons of TOWS Analysis.

Advantages of TOWS Matrix

  1. TOWS Analysis helps to stumble upon strategic ideas by interconnecting the internal and external factors for the organizations.
  2. It is cost-effective in nature.
  3. It’s user-friendly and can be performed by any layman after learning a few parameters.
  4. TOWS Analysis can be applied to any company irrespective of the industries and economies.
  5. It helps organizations to upgrade their strategies with changing dynamics.

Disadvantages of TOWS Matrix

  1. TOWS analysis becomes tough to handle if we are overloaded with information.
  2. On many occasions, TWOS Matrix doesn’t take the ever-changing competitive environment into consideration and can affect the main agenda of finding out strategies for business in attaining elevated profits, higher sales, creation of brand value and etcetera.

Summary

TOWS Matrix is a framework to assess, create, compare, and finally decide upon the business strategies. It is a modified version of a SWOT analysis. The TOWS Matrix helps in the generation of amazing ideas in relation to fruitful marketing strategies, decision-making, protection against threats, opportunities, diminishing threats, overcoming weaknesses and awareness regarding potential shortcomings.

The four TOWS strategies are Strength/Opportunity (SO), Weakness/Opportunity (WO), Strength/Threat (ST), and Weakness/Threat (WT).

TOWS Analysis can be applied to any company irrespective of the industries and economies. It is user-friendly and can be performed by any layman after learning a few parameters. However, the TOWS analysis becomes tough to handle if we are overloaded with information.

How to do a PESTLE Analysis? (Explanation & Example)

How to do a PESTLE Analysis? (Explanation & Example)

Hello readers! We are back with another interesting article that will help to enlighten your knowledge horizon regarding the nitty-gritty of strategic management for running a prosperous business.

Are you someone who is planning to take the road of entrepreneurship and set up a new business by quitting your 9 to 5? Then, this article is most definitely for you! Well, to start off, there are a lot of factors that are needed to take into consideration for establishing a start-up business. Interestingly, it is not only the startups but also the Blue Chip Companies who need to constantly gauge strategies for sustaining their businesses and make a prominence. Today, we are going to discuss a strategic management framework known as PESTLE (Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal, Environmental) Analysis which has emerged to be an important apparatus for scanning the internal and external factors impacting a business.

Let us first learn the definition to understand the concept of PESTLE Analysis.

What is PESTLE Analysis?

A PESTLE Analysis is a hypothesis under the category of marketing principles ensuring business growth and profitability.

Francis J. Aguilar, a professor at Harvard Business School is considered to be the founder of the PESTLE Analysis in 1964. However, it didn’t commence as PESTLE but started as ETPS and covered four broad factors namely  Economic, Technical, Political and Social aspects.

Initially, it was known as PEST Analysis. It is anatomy and a strategic management tool that helps to scrutinize the macro-environmental factors that may have a resonating influence on an organization’s accomplishments. The acronym PESTLE is the shortened form of Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal factors and Environmental factors. The concept largely helps companies to acquire a transparent insight into the intramural and extramural factors affecting their organization. It also provides a general overview of the environment from multifarious points before launching a new project, new product, new service, etc.

PESTLE Analysis is contemplated as the backbone of strategic management that interprets the approach of a company and defines an organization’s strategies and intertwined futuristic goals.  The theory can be applied to different industries in divergent scenarios because of its analytical flexibility. In order to conduct the PESTLE Analysis, it is utterly important to understand each letter of the “PESTLE” in depth.

PESTLE ANALYSIS Flow

— Political Factors

Political factors usually indicate the authoritative powers that a government possesses in the economy or, in case of a certain industry. Such factors consist of policies of the government, extent of political stability, foreign trade policy, fiscal policy, trade tariffs, labor law, health regulations, education system, environmental law, infrastructure, corruption, and etcetera. All these aspects need to be taken into account when evaluating the lucrativeness of a potential market.

Example: A government may levy a new tax policy or fiscal policy or trade tariffs in a new financial year which can affect the revenue generation of organizations to a large extent. Recently, the Government Of India has reduced corporate tax rates to 22% from 30%. Consequently, this move will help the top-notch companies to revive their profitability and would be a  good catalyst for luring investment from foreign investors. The announcement also arrives at a perfect time because major American organizations are involved in a trade war with China and are finding alternative global manufacturing pedestals.

— Economic Factors

Economic factors are crucial determinants and plays an important role in the performance of an economy. Such factors generally end up becoming a key decision-maker in the success or, failure of a company. A surge in the rate of inflation of any economy can affect the pricing pattern of a companies’ products and services. In addition, it also impacts the purchasing power parity of the consumers and brings about a change in the forces of demand and supply in the economy. The economic factors include inflation rates, exchange rates, interest rates, economic growth, gross domestic product, unemployment rates, economic growth and disposable income of consumers.

EXAMPLE: In  India, in the past few weeks, vegetable prices have skyrocketed and as a result, there is a rise in the rate of inflation. Consequently, due to the hike in prices, the purchasing power of people has gone down which ultimately indicates that there will be a fall in consumer demand.

— Social Factors

Social factors pin-point the social environment in relation to the industries and constitute the demographic features, customs, norms, and values of the population within the operating periphery of the organization. Social factors consider the population trends such as age distribution, cultural barriers, income distribution, the growth rate of population, lifestyle attitudes, career inclinations, and health consciousness.

All the above-mentioned aspects are very significant for marketing strategists when earmarking the customer bases. Apart from that, the factors also reveal information about the local workforce and their compliance to work under certain conditions.

EXAMPLE: In today’s era, the demand for junk foods like Pizza and Burgers has gone up extensively, especially amongst the younger generation. Thus, companies like Dominos, Pizza Hut, Burger King and KFC are churning out huge profits because of the consumers’ behavior. On the contrary, the same doesn’t hold true for the people in rural areas. This is how social factors affect companies’ revenue structure.

— Technological Factors

Technological Factors have relevance to modernization in technology which influences the performance of an industry. Such factors include a level of innovation, research, and development (R&D) activity, amount of technological awareness, technology incentives and automation. Technological Factors highly affect the decisions regarding entry/exit in an industry, launching of a new product and outsourcing production-related activities. Possessing a sound knowledge regarding technology helps companies from spending a lump sum amount of money on obtaining a technology that would become obsolete in the near future due to the innovation of newer technologies globally.

EXAMPLE: The business space is filled with cautionary sagas of large scale companies that became failures due to their inability to keep up with the dynamic technological innovation. One such prominent example is Kodak, a technology company that used to produce camera-centric products and hegemonized the photographic film market during most of the 20th century. The breakthrough in digital photography contributed to the catastrophic misfortune of their film-based business model.

— Legal Factors

Legal factors include laws such as health and safety laws, discrimination laws, safety standards, employment laws, consumer protection laws, copyright and patent laws and antitrust laws. Every company is bound to have awareness regarding the laws for the purpose of conducting ethical business. In addition, a business owner also needs to be aware of any possible alteration in legislation which may have an impact on the business in the long term. Interestingly, the set of rules and regulations varies from country to country. Analysis of legal factors figures out strategies based on the backdrop of the legislations. However, it is always advised to have an appointed lawyer or an attorney to guide through the complexities.

EXAMPLE: Nestle had to take away the packets of Maggi from the stores’ shelves after the  Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAAI) summoned Nestle because of their negligence to adhere with the laws of food safety. Regulators found lead content beyond the permissible limit in its instant noodle product.

— Environmental Factors

Environmental factors have appeared to become a pivotal character recently. They have become utterly valuable due to carbon footprint targets, scarcity of raw materials and pollution targets fixed by governments. Environmental factors include ecological facets like climate change, weather conditions, environmental offsets which highly govern tourism, agriculture, and farming industries. Especially, large-scale campaigns regarding the burning issue of climate change are leading to the change in operation and products of the companies. Therefore, practices of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Sustainability forms an integral part of the companies and is taking new shapes with each passing day.

EXAMPLE: Due to the imposition of government rules as a measure to curb global warming, regulations on fossil fuel industries have increased considerably and as a result, this move has started threatening the thriving coal, oil, and gas industries.

PESTLE Analysis Example — SONY

sony corporation

SONY is a Japanese MNC  and has abruptly metamorphosed into one of the dominant entertainment organizations in the world. Its versatile business products consist of electronics, entertainment gaming,  and financial services. The company is the owner of the largest music entertainment business around the globe and also a chief player in the film and television entertainment industry.

Political Factors

SONY is a world-class brand and has a prominent presence in several countries around the world.  The political scenario in different countries largely impacts the SONY’s success. As we know, political Stability ignites growth and political instability, on the other hand, paralyzes the rules and regulations of an economy. In Sony’s context, its supply chain is located in China. Thus, any kind of political disturbance in China will have a heavy influence on Sony’s generation of profits.

Economic Factors

SONY products fall under the category of luxury goods. Such goods are not items of necessity but are usually purchased when people want to splurge on themselves. In a nutshell, if you living paycheck to paycheck, a SONY product would not be a priority in your list of necessities. In another instance,  economic instability and the high rate of unemployment in a country will never attract buyers for the high-end SONY products. Consequently, the profits will touch a rock bottom. Therefore, it is crystal clear that a big giant like SONY extensively depends on stable and emerging economies to merchandise their entertainment products.

Social Factors

Traditions, culture, age distribution, taste, and preferences vary from nation to nation. SONY offers entertainment products beginning with movies to music which basically acts as an escape to reality. It is to be kept in mind that not every nation has the same pattern of entertainment. Therefore, it is extremely important for SONY to keep up to date regarding the buying trends of the consumers and consequently tailor the products and services fitting the requirements of the customers.

Technological Factors

SONY is a true blue technology company because every other product is correlated with the usage of technology in some way. The company’s  Video Game  Consoles are nothing but computer devices that produces video signal or,  optical image to exhibit a video game for multiple players. On the other hand, laptops help users to stay connected to social media and other websites on the world wide web. In today’s era, the availability of the internet has removed all the possible obstacles of communication and SONY has bagged this opportunity to market their products online. It has become convenient for the company to announce any new launch of products via the medium of the internet.

Legal Factors

Since SONY is an international company and sells its products across many countries, it also has to abide by the diversified legal regulations of different countries. Any failure to adhere to the legalization like labor laws to tax policies, the company might end up in serious legal trouble or lawsuits which can further affect their prosperous business.

Environmental Factors

Sony believes that their corporate pursuits will be possible when there is a practice of sustainable development and thus they are so full of conviction regarding climate change, conservation of biodiversity, renewability of resources and other valuable measures to save the environment. SONY has taken up initiatives regarding environmental activities since the 1990s.  In April’10, a new environmental plan was introduced by SONY to set up a sustainable community by accomplishing a zero carbon footprint by the year 2050.

We will now elaborate on the major pros and cons of PESTLE Analysis.

Advantages And Disadvantages of PESTLE Analysis

— Advantages of PESTLE Analysis

  1. PESTLE Analysis has a basic framework and follows a simple process for conducting an assessment.
  2. It furnishes a mechanism that allows an organization to pinpoint and cash in on golden opportunities and utilize them to reinforce a firm’s business model.
  3. It helps to diminish the impact and consequences of possible threats to an organization.
  4. It sanctions a company to examine the process of entering untapped markets both nationally and internationally.
  5. It helps to build a custom of strategic thinking for strengthening the company’s position.
  6. It is absolutely cost-effective and the cost to do any level of the assessment isn’t exposed to oscillations.

— Disadvantages of PESTLE Analysis

  1. PESTLE analysis cannot showcase the full picture because it only focuses on six factors that are external in nature. In strategic planning, one needs to go beyond these six factors which can provide internal insights as well.
  2. The Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental factors are very dynamic in nature. Any shift in any of these factors can change the result of PESTLE Analysis drastically.
  3. PESTLE Analysis is time-consuming in general and requires loads of data. Each of the factors needs to be thoroughly examined to come to a conclusion and thus, takes up a lot of time.

Summary

PESTLE Analysis provides a basic framework and follows a simple process for conducting an assessment. It is a hypothesis under the category of marketing principles ensuring business growth and profitability. In order to conduct the PESTLE Analysis, it is utterly important to understand each letter of the “PESTLE” in-depth i.e. Political Factors, Economic Factors, Social Factors, Technological Factors, Legal Factors & Environmental Factors.

What is Corporate Governance? Principles, Examples & More

What is Corporate Governance? Principles, Examples & More

Hello readers! Today we are back with another intriguing topic from the core world of finance – Corporate Governance! Put your reading glasses on and stay glued!

In this era of globalization where information is just a tap away, we all are pretty much familiar with the names of top-notch companies like Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Asian Paints, ITC, Unilever, and etcetera! Over the years, they have continued to grow in manifolds in spite of the emergence of various substitutes. Have you ever wondered what could be the secrets behind the success and sustainability of these companies apart from their brand value and consistent sales? Well, let’s dive in without further delay!

In order to flag off the session on a lighter note, we will put forward an example on a micro-level.

In schools and colleges, the fests are held annually with pomp and glory! The responsibilities and tasks are carried out in a chained way. Preparations begin prior to one to two months and require proper governance!  The absence of a good governing committee would have led them to a path of big failure. Similarly, every company require sound corporate governance to grow and augment in the long run.

What is Corporate Governance?

Corporate Governance is the procedure by means of which a  corporation guidelines itself. In a nutshell, it is a process of administering a company like a monarchial state which installs its own customs, laws, and policies from the highest to the lowest levels.

In financial terms, Corporate Governance is the collaboration of well -defined rules, processes and laws by which functions and regulations of business take place. Most companies leave no stone unturned to achieve a high degree of corporate governance. It is the responsibility of the board of directors to build a  framework for corporate governance that syncs with the objectives and mission of the business.

In the last decade, corporate governance has gained immense and serious attention because of high-profile scams and criminal activity by corporate officers in power. Poor corporate governance can have an adverse effect on a company’s financial health and level of trustworthiness.

The structure and frame of the Corporate Governance comprise of the Board Of Directors, Management and Shareholders! Let us first understand each of their key roles in-depth.

The Structure of Corporate Governance

— Board of Directors

The Board Of Directors plays a pivotal character in commanding the company’s management and business blueprints to accomplish long-term value creation. The most important functions of the board are:

  • Determine the company’s vision and mission to guide and set the pace for its current operations and future development.
  • Monitoring/examining the CEO’s performance and overseeing the procedure regarding CEO succession.
  • Understand and take into account the interests of shareholders and relevant stakeholders.
  • Avoiding conflicts of Interest

— Management:

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) leads the management of the company. Important aspects like strategic planning, risk alleviation, and financial reporting falls under the umbrella of the management. An efficient team of management escorts the company with the determination of achieving the business strategies over a considerable time horizon and avoids focusing on short-term metrics.

— Shareholders:

Shareholders invest in a public company by purchasing its stock from the exchange via brokers and earn capital gains with a rise in the price of the stocks. However,  Shareholders are not embroiled in the day-to-day management of business affairs but enjoy the right to elect representatives i.e. Directors. They also receive a Quarterly/Annual Report which consists of information regarding investments and voting decisions.

Competent Corporate Governance needs crystal clear generosity and interaction between Board Of Directors, Management and Shareholders in accelerating a company’s performance. Efficient corporate governance shapes up a transparent bunch of rules and regulations in which directors, management and shareholders have aligned ambitions. The framework allows the board of directors to affirm fairness, accountability, and transparency in a company’s relationship with all stakeholders (management, financiers, customers employees, government, and the community).

Also read: What is a BCG Matrix? Explanation with Example!

Principles of Corporate Governance 

A company that follows the hardcore core fundamentals of good corporate governance will generally surpass other companies in terms of financial advancement. The core principles of sound corporate governance include Fairness, Accountability, Responsibility & Transparency. Let us discuss all these principles one by one.

corporate governance pillars

— Fairness

Fairness touches on the points of uniform and equal treatment of all the shareholders in reference to receival of considerations regarding shareholdings. The fairer the company appears to stakeholders, the more likely it is that it can endure in the league.

— Accountability

Corporate accountability is an act of responsibility and obligation to provide an explanation for the company’s actions and activities. Corporate Accountability includes the  followings:

  • Presentation of a balanced and simple analysis of the company’s orientation and prospects.
  • Responsibility for determining the character and extent of the adopted risks by the company.
  • Maintenance of  adequate risk management and internal control structure.
  • Setting up formal and unclouded arrangements for corporate reports and a suitable relationship with the company’s auditor.
  • Proper communication with shareholders regarding diversification, progress and financial reports at frequent

— Responsibility:

The CEO and Board of Directors are accountable to the shareholders on behalf of the company regarding the execution of responsibilities. Thus, they should exercise their authority with full responsibility. The Board of Directors is responsible for conducting the management of the business, appointing the suitable CEO, overseeing the affairs of the company and keeping an eye on the performance of the company.

— Transparency:

Transparency means a company should reveal an informative piece of data about their activities to shareholders and other stakeholders. It also includes the open-mindedness and willingness to divulge financial figures which are genuine and correct in reality. The unveiling of reports regarding the organization’s accomplishments and activities should be on time and strive for accuracy. Such steps ensure the investors’  access to transparent and factual data which finely mirrors the financial, environmental and social position of the organization.

Benefits of Corporate Governance

Here are a few of the major benefits of having good corporate governance in a company:

— A good corporate governance practice gives rise to a strict compliance culture. It is advantageous in multiple ways and is directly related to improved performances. Due to the existence of such a strict environment, all the members are bound to adhere to the work culture, establish proper lines of communication with the rest of the organization and are promptly responsive to any evidence when there is any signal of non-compliance.

— Marvelous Corporate Governance has instant access to information and excellent communication. Rapid access to information and good communication among the members of a company leads to the formulation of robust strategies. Such strategies include efficient allocation of resources, leveraging technology and etcetera.

— Good Corporate Governance can lift up a company’s influence and reputation. Strong schemes like strict fiscal policies and internal controls help to gain trust and reliability among stakeholders.  Such genuine practices also help the company to borrow funds at a lower rate than those with weak corporate governance because lenders will be able to have faith in an organization that is seen to be stable, reliable and able to mitigate potential risks In today’s volatile environment.

— Increasing cognizance and consensus about the importance of good corporate governance among investors results in more number of investments in companies that have a prosperous track record. It also shields investors from possible scandals and aids to raise capital efficiently by gaining investors’ confidence. Thus, there is a positive influence on the share price and helps in brand formation and development.

— In this age of globalization and liberalization, there is a positive correlation between an excellent Corporate Governance and inflow of Foreign Investment. According to statistics, studies imply that Foreign Institutional Investors (FII) take notice of well- managed companies and respond positively by infusing capital for investment in the capital market. In order to reap the full benefits of the global capital markets and attract long-term capital, it is extremely important to implement basic principles of good corporate governance which can be well understood across borders. The huge influx  of foreign investment will immensely  churn up the economic growth and will prove to be a priceless step in enabling the organization to stand against tough economic storms and back a company’s

— Demonstration of good corporate governance also enables corporate social responsibilities like environmental awareness, health, education, sanitation, and other social aspects.

— At times, good corporate governance can help ensure that officials of a company do not take unwarranted advantage at the expense of their shareholders. For example- of Insider Trading.

Insider Trading refers to trading inequities of a company by internal members (directors, managers,em­ployees) of the company based on the sensitive information which is unknown to outsiders. It is a scandalous activity that is committed by the officials of the company and is critically connected to the arenas of Corporate Governance. The wisest way of handling this problem is by pushing the companies to imbibe self- regulation and adopting preventive measures. Such prophylactic action sends off a signal regarding the exercise of self-regulatory practices and assurance of safety to invest in the company’s securities. Hence, Good corporate governance also reduces corruption.

— Good corporate governance also provides the elasticity to apply customized practices that fits the companies’ requirements and to alter those practices in light of ever-changing conditions, benchmarks, and standards.

Examples of Corporate Governance

Now, after the elongated discussion and explanation, let us understand the concept with two examples!

HDFC Bank

(Industry – Private Banking and Financial Services)

HDFC Bank identifies the significance of good corporate governance, which takes care of the long-term interests of shareowners and helps to win the public trust in the Company. Therefore, the Corporate Governance scheme is introduced to proffer a course and structure for managing and regulating the bank in accordance with the principles of superlative corporate governance policies.

HDFC  Bank was amongst the first four companies which earned a Corporate Governance and Value Creation (GVC) rating by The Credit Rating Information Services of India Limited (CRISIL). The bank has been successful in achieving a ‘CRISIL GVC Level 1’ rating for the last two consecutive years. This symbolizes that the bank has the potential to create wealth for all its stakeholders while preaching the highest degree of corporate governance practices. The Bank truly believes in transparent disclosures and the empowerment of shareholders for weaving value.

The chart shows the past 17 years of data from the year 2000. Going by the chart,  HDFC bank has generated huge wealth over the years and is known for its laurel worthy Corporate Governance.

hdfc bank share price

On the contrary, in recent times, there are several specimens that have grabbed headlines regarding massive failures of corporate governance. One such is the Punjab National Bank ( PNB) Scandal.

— Punjab National Bank (PNB)

(Industry: Public Sector Bank)

Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam was put up across all news channels for a scam size of size 12,000 crores. The fact that the main accused i.e.  Nirav Modi was able to siphon off funds without being suspected by investigating committees or, the income tax department points out to the mammoth loopholes in the governance. The existence of proper corporate governance in  Punjab National Bank (PNB) could have singled out the large scale scandal of this level.

PNB Share price

In the chart, it is clearly evident how te share prices started falling just prior to the announcement of the scam and went on a downhill journey since then.

Also read: 3 Past Biggest Scams That Shook Indian Stock Market

Summary

Let us quickly summarize what we discussed in this article. Corporate Governance is the procedure by means of which a corporation guidelines itself. In a nutshell, it is a process of administering a company like a monarchial state which installs its own customs, laws, and policies from the highest to the lowest levels.

In financial terms, Corporate Governance is the collaboration of well -defined rules, processes and laws by which functions and regulations of business take place. Most companies leave no stone unturned to achieve a high degree of corporate governance. The structure and frame of the Corporate Governance comprise of the Board Of Directors, Management and Shareholders!

A company that follows the hardcore core fundamentals of good corporate governance will generally surpass other companies in terms of financial  The core principles of sound corporate governance include Fairness, Accountability Responsibility, and Transparency. There is a multitude of benefits arising out of good governance which helps a company to ride on the waves of growth.

What is derivative trading

What is Derivative Trading? Futures & Options Explained

Hello readers. One of the most frequently asked questions by Trade Brains’ readers is what is futures and options trading. In this article, we are going to cover this topic and discuss what is derivative trading along with explaining futures and options. Let’s get started.

What are Derivatives?

A derivative is a device whose monetary value is extracted from the value of one or more primary variables called bases. Here, the bases mainly indicate underlying assets, interest rate or indexes. These underlying assets further comprise equity, foreign exchange, commodity, or any other asset.

As the value of these underlying assets keeps fluctuating, these changes in value can help traders to earn profits from derivative trading. The most common types of derivatives are futures, options, forwards and swaps.

This evolution of the market for derivative products like Forwards, Futures, and Options dates back to the compliance of risk hesitant economic advocates to shield themselves against volatilities emerging out of ups and downs in asset prices. In other words, it acts as a hedging apparatus against oscillation in commodity prices.

Post-1970, financial derivatives majorly came under the limelight due to thriving fluctuations in the markets. Ever since they seeped into the picture, these products have gained quite a popularity and have reckoned for about two-thirds of total transactions in derivative products by 1990.

In the class of equity derivatives, Future and Options have acquired more eminence than individual stocks. The trend is especially prominent among institutional investors who are frequent partakers of index-linked derivatives. Financial markets are marked by an escalated amplitude of volatility but with the utilization of derivative products, it is viable to partially or fully shift the price risks by remanding the asset prices.

As equipment of risk management, these generally do not determine the inconstancy in the underlying asset prices. However, by tapping in asset prices, derivative products reduce the influence of fluctuations in asset prices on the profitability and cash flow scenario of risk-afraid investors.

Factors driving the Growth of Derivatives

In the last thirty years, the derivatives market has seen an exemplary advancement. A huge variety of derivative contracts have been introduced at exchanges across the globe. Some of the factors which are surging the cultivation of financial derivatives are:

  1. Elevated synthesis of national financial markets with the global markets.
  2. Considerable development in communication amenities and acute declination in their costs.
  3. Growth of more sophisticated risk management devices, providing economic agents with a variety of choices.

Derivative Products

Derivative contracts have diversified variants. The most basic variants are Forwards, Futures & Options. 

1. Forward Contract :

A forward contract is a customized contract between two individuals, where settlement takes place on a definite date in the future at the current pre-compiled price. Other contract details like delivery date, price, and quantity are negotiated bilaterally by the parties. The forward contracts are generally traded outside the exchanges.

On the expiration date, the contract has to be settled by the delivery of the asset. If the party wishes to counterpole the contract, it has to imperatively go to the same counter-party, which often results in charging higher prices. In certain markets, Forward Contracts have become standardized like in the case of foreign exchanges. Such standardization reduces transaction costs and increases transaction volumes.

For example, let us consider an exporter who expects to receive payment in dollars three months later. He is exposed to the risk of exchange rate fluctuations. Thus, utilizing the currency forward market to sell dollars forward, he can clinch on to a rate today and diminish his uncertainty.

2. Futures Contract:

A futures contract is an alliance between two parties to purchase or sell an asset at a stipulated time in the future at a specific price. Futures contracts are special types of forward contracts that are traded on exchanges. Future Contracts also facilitate the elimination of risk and provide more liquidity to a market participant. The terminology of the Futures Contract consists of Spot Price, Futures Price, Contract Cycle, Expiry Date & Contract Size.

For example, if you buy/sell a crude oil futures contract, you are agreeing to buy/sell a set amount of crude oil at a specific price (the price you place an order at) at some future date. You don’t actually need to take delivery of the crude oil, rather you make or lose money based on whether the contract you bought/sold goes up or down in value relative to where you bought/sold it. You can then close out the trade at any time before it expires to lock in your profit or loss.

3. Options  Contract:

Options are of two types namely, Calls & Puts. Calls give the buyer the authority but not the obligation to purchase a given quantity of the underlying asset, at a given price on or before a given future date. Puts give the buyer the authority, but not the obligation to sell a given quantity of the underlying asset at a given price on or before a given date. Unlike, Futures Contract, the purchase of an Option requires up-front payment. 

Also read: What Drives Stock Returns? (Divergence Analysis)

Participants in the Derivative markets

There are four broad categories of participants namely Hedgers, Speculators, Margin Traders, and Arbitrageurs. Let’s discuss each of them now:

1. Hedgers: Traders who aspire to secure themselves from the risk involved price actions generally participate in the derivatives market. They have been called hedgers because they try to hedge the price of their assets by undertaking an exact opposite trade in the derivatives market. 

2. Speculators: Unlike hedgers, Speculators look for opportunities to take on risk in the hope of making returns. These stark contrast in risk figuration and market views sets apart hedgers from speculators.

3. Margin Traders: Dealing with derivative products doesn’t require payment of the total value of the upfront position. Instead,  depositing only a fraction of the total sum does the work and is known as Margin Trading. Margin Trading results in a high leverage factor in derivative trade because, with a small deposit, one is able to keep a large outstanding position.

4. Arbitrageurs: Derivative instruments are valued on the basis of the underlying asset’s value in the spot market. However, there are times when the price level of stock in the cash market is lower or higher in comparison to its price in the derivatives market. Arbitrageurs tap the opportunities and exploit these blemishes and disorganization to their favor.

Arbitrage trade is a low-risk trade, where a parallel deal in securities is done in one market and a corresponding sale is executed in another market. Such a trade is carried out when the same securities are being quoted at different prices in two different markets.

For example, in the cash market, let us consider the price is quoting at Rs. 1000 per share. On the other hand, it is at Rs. 1010 in the futures market. An arbitrageur would purchase 100 shares at Rs. 1000 in the cash market and sell 100 shares at Rs. 1010 per share in the futures market, thereby making a profit of Rs. 10 per share.

Also read: The Stock Market Cycle: 4 Stages That Every Trader Should Know!

Summary: Derivative Trading

A derivative is a device whose monetary value is extracted from the value of one or more primary variables called bases. Here, the bases mainly indicate underlying assets, interest rate or indexes. Further, the asset can be anything from stocks, commodities, currency to interest rates.

The most common types of derivatives are futures, options, forwards and swaps. In derivative trading, the traders take advantage of the fluctuating value of underlying assets to make profits.

7 Best Stock Market Discussion Forums in India cover

7 Best Stock Market Discussion Forums in India

One of the easiest ways to learn anything new is by participating in the discussions. And the same rule applies when you are trying to learn trading or investing. If you are new to stocks and looking for the best stock market discussion forums in India to start participating, then you’ve entered the right page.

In this article, we are going to share the list of seven best stock market discussion forums in India where you can ask your most troublesome questions or share your ideas/knowledge with fellow investors and traders. On all these forums, you can find active discussions on stock market investing, trading, investing strategies, stock picks, IPOs, mutual funds, taxation, personal finance and more.

Besides, all these forums are FREE to join and hence, it doesn’t cost you anything to signup and start participating in interesting topics on these Indian stock market discussion forums.

7 Best Stock Market Discussion Forums in India

Here are seven of the best forums in India for healthy discussions on stock market investing and trading:

1. Traderji

traderji forum Started in 2004, Traderji is one of the oldest and most popular stock market discussion forum for investors and traders in India.

This platform has over 1.8 lakhs members participating in different threads on the stock market, derivates, Commodity and Forex trading of India. As per the statistics on this website, there are over 59,300 threads and 1,202,464 messages on this forum.

A few popular categories on the Traderji forum are Beginner’s guide, General trading and investing chat, technical analysis, mutual fund discussion forum, tools, and resources.

Here’s a quick link to join the Traderji Stock Market discussion forum.

2. Trading Q&A

trading qna forum

Trading Q&A is a famous online discussion platform for traders and investors which is managed by Zerodha, the biggest discount broker in India. With thousands of active participants on this forum, you can get all your trading queries answered here, along with sharing your own knowledge with fellow traders.

On Trading Q&A, you can ask questions about Intraday Trading, Derivatives, Commodity, Investing Strategies, Broker Review, Algo-Trading, Zerodha & its products, Taxation, IPOs and much more.

Here’s a quick link to join the Trading Q&A forum.

3. Trade Brains Discussion Forum

trade brains discussion forum

Trade Brains discussion forum is an online forum for the community of enthusiastic stock market investors and traders who are willing to learn, ask, and share their skills, thoughts, and knowledge. This forum has been listed among the top 9 Online Forums To Discuss Personal Finance and Trading in Asia by Fintech Singapore News.

On Trade Brains’ forum, you can find discussions on categories belonging to Share market investing and trading, fundamental analysis, mutual funds, IPO’s, personal finance and money management.

Here, you can participate in the forum for free by reading/writing the answers on the existing queries or asking your own questions by simply signing up for the forum.

Here’s the quick link to join Trade Brains’ forum.

4. ValuePickr Forum

valuepickr forum

One of the most active forum for stock market discussion in India. ValuePickr’s tagline is “Separating the Wheat from the Chaff” and focuses on discussions regarding the company’s Business Quality, Management Quality, Business Execution & Performance.

Here, you can find topics on stock opportunities (hidden gems, Untested but worth a good look category, top 5 picks), Investing strategies, Questions & Answers, Investor Toolkit, Investment Learning, Books and more. You can get a lot of knowledge about the Indian stock market by simply hovering over the topics and queries.

Here’s a quick link to join the forum.

5. Stock Adda

stockadda forum

Stock Adda is an Indian stock investor community where along with the stock market discussions, you can also get information like stock ideas, investing strategies, news, market movements, books, etc.

Besides, on StockAdda, you can also create a stock portfolio or view the ranking of member portfolios based on Daily and overall gains(%). Overall, it is an amazing platform for social traders/investors.

Here’s a quick link to join the forum.

6. Rakesh Jhunjhunwala Forum

rakesh jhunjhunwala stock talk forum

Stocks Talk Forum by Rakesh Jhunjhunwala is yet another popular stock market discussion forums in India.

First of all, I should mention that this site is Inspired, Not Endorsed, By Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, one of the most successful Indian stock market investors.

On this discussion forum, you can find topics on categories like stock investment queries, stock picks of wizards, portfolio of famous investors, stock advisory services, must-read interviews, articles and more. You can find over 3,250 discussions on this forum.

Here’s a quick link to join the Rakesh Jhunjhunwala forum.

7. Bse2Nse

bse2nse forum

Bse2Nse is another popular Indian Stock forum discussion for Equity, FnO, and commodity trading. Here you can find discussions on stock trading, investing strategies, broker reviews, IPOs, mutual funds and more. They also have a separate section on Chart Analysis which can be very helpful for technical traders.

Here’s a quick link to join this stock market discussion forum.

Closing Thoughts:

In this article, we discussed the seven best stock market discussion forums in India. However, before ending this article, let me give you a piece of final advice.

All these forums are built by active members who are willing to share useful ideas and answers. Please keep your posts relevant to the forum category and do not ‘SPAM’! Else, you will be thrown out of the forum by the admins and moderators. Be respectful to others and don’t sweat the small stuff.

Also read: 7 Best Indian Stock Market Blogs to Follow.

That’s all for this post. Comment below if you are part of any of the above-mentioned discussion forum or are willing to join soon. Else, if I missed any awesome Indian stock market discussion forum worth adding to this list, mention below in the comment box. Cheers and have a great day!

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