Financial literacy seminar at SIES College of Management Studies, Navi Mumbai
After several successful events for management students in the past, Moneylife Foundation conducted another special programme for students—“Be Safe and Smart with Your Money”—at SIES College of Management Studies, Navi Mumbai. The programme imparts real-life financial knowledge that their curriculum does not, usually, expose the students to. The first session was conducted by Sucheta Dalal, managing editor of Moneylife and founder-trustee of Moneylife Foundation. She pointed out to the students how one can avoid financial mistakes so that they do not lose money. The second session was addressed by Debashis Basu, editor and founder-trustee of Moneylife Foundation. He articulated the simple steps for investing smartly.
It is important for college students, who will soon enter the workforce, to have a good understanding of what it takes to protect their money and invest smartly in a manner that would deliver prosperity in the long term. Unfortunately, college education does not prepare students for the intricacies and the realities of managing money. There are several instances of youngsters being lured by chain-marketing schemes or get-rich-quick schemes which, often, promise quick and easy money.
Ms Dalal started her session with a brief introduction about scams in India. There is no dearth of frauds in India. Freshers are easy targets for scamsters. There are various types of scams out to get us—lottery scam, job scam, conference scam and interest-waiver scam. The number of scams being reported is infinite. Such schemes claim to provide extremely high returns luring unsuspecting savers only to vanish from the scene.
In her session, Ms Dalal informed students about currency notes, security features in a note and how to identify a real note from a fake one. Students who were able to provide correct answers to her questions on currency notes received a surprise gift from Ms Dalal.
In the second session titled, “How to invest smartly”, Mr Basu asserted that everybody can make correct financial decisions, if only they stick to some simple principles such as saving early, saving as much as possible and investing in a few financial products that are useful. He explained the principles of compounding under different scenarios. The effect of compounding is slow initially; but, with the passage of time, the power of compounding surges and the wealth created is huge. Where does one invest?
Mr Basu advised students to keep it simple: home loans, bank fixed deposits, equity funds and stocks. As college students have time on their side, he advised them to invest in equity mutual funds and stocks, with an investment horizon of 15 years or more.