The rise in retail folios is mainly due to addition in the equity segment, which was supported by sharp rally in the stock markets
Driven by addition in equity fund folios, mutual fund houses have registered a surge of more than seven lakh investor accounts during the first nine months of FY2014-15.
The addition comes after fund houses lost about 33 lakh investor accounts in the entire last fiscal year. Folios are numbers designated to individual investor accounts, though one investor can have multiple folios.
According to the data from Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) on total investor accounts with 45 fund houses, the number of folios rose to 4.03 crore at the end of 31 December 2014 from 3.95 crore duing same period last year, a gain of 7.28 lakh folios.
Of the 4.03 crore folios, retail investors accounted for 3.86 crore folios, followed by HNI accounts (13.22 lakh) and institutional investors (3.34 lakh).
Industry officials say the rise in retail folios is mainly due to addition in the equity segment, which was supported by sharp rally in the stock markets.
"Increased participation by retail investors in equities has undoubtedly led to increase in folio numbers. The industry's focus on investor awareness seems to have contributed to further growth, in terms of new investors coming in," HSBC Global Asset Management India CEO Puneet Chaddha said.
"The key contributing factors seem to be an uptick in sentiments and expectations of an investor friendly and reform-oriented government delivering on policy changes," he added.
The number of mutual investor accounts had been falling since March 2009 at about 2% a year. Since March 2014, however, there is a arrest in the rate of decline, AMFI noted.
The equity category saw an addition of more than 12 lakh folios to 3.03 crore investors at the end of 31 December 2014.
The segment saw first rise in folios in April after reporting a consistent decline in investors account in last four years.
The addition in equity folios is in line with BSE's benchmark Sensex surging by 23% in the first nine months of the current financial year.
Besides, nearly 80% of the investor accounts are in equity oriented schemes, while 17% of the accounts are in debt related schemes.