This is with regard to “Cut Cost, Gain More: Invest Directly in Mutual Funds” by Raj Pradhan. Kudos to Raj Pradhan! He has written the most comprehensive article on investing in direct plans of mutual funds. This is a popular topic and I have read many articles and blog posts on the subject; but none so detailed, balanced and well-designed to help investors take the leap. I would like to caution investors, of regular and direct plans: not getting good, honest and timely advice can be significantly more costly than higher expense ratios of a product. The same is true for inability to transact with ease. Often, actions are avoided or delayed just because they seem cumbersome. Both of these routinely lead to losses and missed opportunities. So if you are going direct, ensure that you are still getting good advice from some other sources and that you are comfortable with the transaction process. If you are going through a distributor (whether individual or organisation), check if their advice is more for suitable for you or for them.
Anand Doctor, online comment
This is with regard to “Buy stocks of consumer products companies, not their products” by R Balakrishnan. Excellent article! Mindless consumerism makes life pathetic. Thank God for giving some people the wisdom to write such articles; perhaps, some policy-makers sitting in a high office would read them and get enlightened. Frugal and simple living and high thinking is what is required to live a fulfilling life. Anyway, the current trend is of collective human wisdom flowing down the drain. This economy has great GDP figures, but where is the well-being?
SK Gupta, online comment
This is with regard to “Delisting: Unfair Rules?” by SD Israni. I have shares in a company, Invel Transmissions (the name has changed now). When they de-listed, I could not accept their buy-back offer. So, sometimes, I get a notice for meetings and some financial statements. The common denominator of the 2/4-page financial statements that I receive, if at all, is as follows: considering the expansion plans etc, the directors do not recommend any dividend. The royalties and imports from the parent company continue unabated.
Harish Kohli, online comment
Is Fresh Legislation Needed?
This is with regard to “Model Tenancy Act & Reality” by Sucheta Dalal. It is our habit to find fault with the law, system or procedure. We never blame the people. Not that all tenants are problematic or trouble-shooters. When I went to Kolkata on my posting, it was not difficult to get a flat on rent as owners preferred people from other states—and that too working in a bank—rather than people of that state itself. Our own people, where they get the advantage, exploit the law to the maximum extent and people at the helm also provide full support. The number of litigations is on the increase, as we enjoy postponing our decisions. In any case, one person, the complainant, wants speedy justice. But others do not want quick disposal, as all of them are enjoying at the cost of complainant. It is my view that we should dispose all litigations in three months irrespective of its seriousness, and that there is no need to pass any fresh legislation.
RS Murthy, online comment
High Valuation Caution Needed
This is with regard to “‘Global Factors Have Become Very Important’: Interview with Sunil Singhania” by Jason Monteiro. All group companies of ADAG (Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group) delivered pathetic returns even after two decades for Reliance Infra, and one decade for Reliance Capital and Reliance Communications and Reliance Power. The fund manager says, “We do not see a global crisis.” And Morgan Stanley says that there is 10% probability for the Sensex to be at 26,000 and 40% probability to be at 37,000 and 50% probability to be at 33,500 by December 2015. But, in reality, 10% probability is achieved in shorter time. Only Moneylife is cautioning investors about high valuation. History is repeated.
V Ganesan, online comment
Root of Every Financial Scam
This is with regard to “5 Kinds of Financial Illiteracy” by Sucheta Dalal. At the root of every financial scam is a regulator who is asleep at the wheel. Reluctant to take action, unless forced into it, our Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is a classic “do-not-bother-me” type of animal. Lax regulations, which the RBI has not bothered about changing, and individuals who are afraid to take initiative, are the hallmark of our financial regulation. It is amusing to hear such ‘erudite’ renderings.
R Balakrishnan, by email
Most Vulnerable Category
This is with regard to “Safe and smart money advice for college students.” Great initiative... Must have such programmes organised by principals of all colleges, as this category is the most vulnerable to greed; experienced fraudsters know how to manipulate young aspiring minds. Kudos to Moneylife!
Deepak B, online comment
This is with regard to “Will life insurers now bleed with fraudulent claims?” by Raj Pradhan. As long as insurers underwrite policies properly and effectively on health and financial grounds, frauds can be reduced to a minimum. We can NEVER be a fraud-free country.
Deepak R Khemani, online comment
Are Crossovers Mules?
This is with regard to “What Really Are ‘Crossovers’?” by Veeresh Malik. I have also been wondering about the issue of crossovers. If hatchbacks are donkeys and true SUVs horses, crossovers are the mules: Wry smile?
Anand Vaidya, online comment
This is with regard to “The suit and the NSE’s conduct seem to me attempts at deflection and evasion”. A big thanks to Sucheta Dalal and Debashis Basu for their victory in safeguarding and defending the freedom of expression and media. This is a great job in the service of citizens. A salute to Moneylife’s pursuit of truth and public causes. The arrogance of the National Stock Exchange has been properly punctured.
II. Without Fear!
Congratulations to Moneylife and Sucheta Dalal for this marvellous achievement! This reflects the high standards of professionalism in investigative journalism which Ms Dalal is known for. The country needs more such bold and unbiased journalists who maintain high ethical standards in their profession and keep the high and mighty on their toes. She never yields to any pressure and brings to public notice all wrongdoing, wherever it happens, without fear.
Will Government Policy Remain a Slogan?
This is with regard to “Fortnightly Market View: Back to Reality” by Debashis Basu. There was a time, not long ago, when Western countries, notably the United States, were asking for a proper valuation of the Yuan; now China has delivered a googly and the world is taken by surprise! Personally, I think, two such adjustments are likely before this year is out, effectively enabling the Chinese exporter to get a better value for his products. As for Indian exporters, they would do well to consider: (a) offer the products partly in rupees (say 50%) of the invoice value; and (b) offer the balance in Yuan.
And, Indian importers should be banned from importing cheap rubbish from China. I cannot swallow the fact that even glass marbles are now allowed to be imported and, on India’s Independence Day, cheap brooches of Indian flags were sold, all made in China. Banks should begin to scrutinise invoices before opening L/Cs (letters of credit) for such products. Otherwise, the ‘Make in India’ will remain just a slogan!
Dr Anantha K Ramdas