July 15, 2024

mutual funds

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Equity mutual funds are investment schemes that pool money from various investors and invest a minimum of 65% of their total assets in stocks and equities. These funds aim to provide capital appreciation to investors by investing in a diversified basket of stocks across different sectors and market caps. The returns generated from these underlying stock investments are passed on to the unit holders in proportion to their investment amount.

Benefits of investing in equity mutual funds

There are several benefits of including equity mutual funds in your investment portfolio. Below are some.

  • Diversification:Equity mutual funds invest in a lot of stocks across sectors and market caps. This diversification reduces investment risks that may arise from sudden movement in a particular sector or stock.
  • Professional management: Full-time fund managers research companies and select appropriate stocks based on the fund’s investment strategy and objectives. You as an investorcan benefit from their expertise.
  • Liquidity: You can redeem your investments in equity mutual funds at prevailing net asset value (NAV) on any business day, providing ease of exit.
  • Convenient investing: Even small investors can participate in stock markets by starting an SIP in equity mutual funds with as little as Rs. 500 per month.
  • Inflation hedging: Over the long run, equities typically outperform other asset classes in inflation adjusted return terms, thus acting as a natural inflation hedge.

Key strategies for investing in equity mutual funds

There are different strategies that you may employ based on your profile and preferences.

  • Systematic investment plans: SIPs allow disciplined investing in equity mutual funds with as low as ₹500/month. This is ideal for you if you have a long-term goal.
  • Lumpsum investment: Investing a large corpus at one go allows maximizing returns over the years with the power of compounding for those having investible surplus.
  • Tax saving funds: Equity Linked Saving Schemes (ELSS) help save tax while participating in the equity markets. A lock-in period of 3 years is required.
  • Flexi-cap funds: These hybrid funds invest across market caps and flexible mandates allow funds to rapidly change the allocation during changing market cycles.
  • Index funds: Passively managed funds replicate benchmark indices at a low cost and are suitable if you have a set-and-forget investing approach.

Thus, through prudent mutual fund investments and carefully choosing appropriate strategies based on your goal, time horizon and risk profile, equity mutual fundscan help grow wealth substantially over the long term.

Effective mutual fund investing tips

Here are some ground rules for making the most of your equity mutual fund investments.

  • Start an SIP early and maintain discipline – This allows you to benefit the most from the power of compounding over the years.
  • Invest for at least 5 years– Short-term volatility can be ridden out in equity markets with a long-term view.
  • Choose good funds, not just top performers – Evaluate based on consistency, quality of management rather than just recent returns.
  • Control emotions during market corrections – Use dips to increase SIPs rather than indulging in panic selling.
  • Diversify across market caps and styles – Gain exposure to large-, mid- and small-cap funds.
  • Keep costs low – Opt for direct plans with lower total expense ratios.
  • Review funds periodically – Replace underperformers but give new funds sufficient time to perform.
  • Use systematic transfer plans – Move investments from debt to equity funds over time.
  • Adjust asset allocation with age – Increase debt exposure as you near retirement.

Conclusion

Equity mutual funds offer an ideal way for you to invest in stock markets and participate in India’s growth story at a relatively low cost. With disciplined investing, these funds can play a big role in wealth creation over the long run, despite the accompanying risks. Adopting suitable investment strategies and staying committed as per profile will help you make mutualfund investments and achieve important life goals.

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