Did you forget why today is important?

Dear Customer,

More than ever, women are living longer than men. Women are assuming greater professional and leadership responsibilities, while still managing their personal and family finances.

Questions that we need to ask ourselves:

● What  do I own? – Assess where you are currently, with your investments/ assets – physical and financial.

● What do I owe? – Bring down bad loans, if any.

● What are my goals for my money? – Write down your financial goals; short term, medium term and long term financial goals with amounts and the year in when you need them. Prioritize those goals and start with the first three more important ones.

Key points to keep in mind.

1.  Invest in retirement –  The National Pension System is not talked about enough, with it, you can create a corpus dedicated towards your retirement & also avail tax benefits on payment above 80C.

2.  Protect against the unknown – Take term insurance, there are several tools to help you assess the exact values. Be involved in family finances, it doesn’t mean that you have to be involved in the day-to-day aspect of it. But even just starting with understanding where are the assets, how are they invested, what’s out there? The last thing you want is something unexpected to happen, and you being unprepared to handle it. So even just understanding what your situation is a good start.

3. Get financial education – Getting a better understanding of money takes work, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Equipped with the right attitude and education, women can feel empowered and confident about their financial future.

I am a strong believer in the live well and save smart philosophy. Investing is not as hard as it is made to sound. You can educate yourself on your investments through the journey. Equip yourself to ask the right questions and don’t fall into any sugar traps of returns and multiplied money.

Women’s investments are no longer an option, however a reality and a priority. Invest for you.

Watch our video on Women and Money

If you have any concern, please write to us at dipika@mywaywealth or call at 7975755821we would be happy to answer your query.

Thanks,
Dipika J (VP, Business development)
MyWay Wealth

What are Public Provident Funds (PPF)?

Everyone wishes for a peaceful retirement. You have worked hard throughout your life, all you want to do now is probably travel to places, watch your grandchildren play, get together with old buddies or simply spend time gardening for which you couldn’t spare time during your employment years. But to do all of this, it’s important that you are financially secure and independent. To achieve your goal, you have to start early.

“Never too late to start. Anything can happen anytime.”

–Avery Neumark

 

The words of Avery Neumark (CPA and Partner in Tax Group at Marks Paneth LLP), is very true, the future is a treasure box of unseen mysteries. Old age can also be unpleasant due to uncertain events like health issues or unexpected emergencies. You want to be prepared for that. Right? Hence, it’s vital that you back your retirement age with assured income to meet all your needs, both planned and unplanned.  There are various schemes that help you create a good corpus to keep you prepared for your golden days to come. One such scheme is our topic for discussion today – “Public Provident Fund”

 

Let me explain about Public Provident Fund (PPF) with the help of “5 Ws”.

  1. What

What is PPF?

On July 1, 1968, the Central Government of India introduced the voluntary Public Provident Fund that would assure income security for resident Indians (both salaried and self-employed) during their retirement. The PPF rate for January – March 2019 (Q4 FY19) is 8%. However, the Indian Government revises these rates every quarter.

 

  1. Why

Why should I opt for PPF?

  • PPF provides assured returns during your old age, thereby providing financial security.
  • PPF is highly reliable and risk-free as it is a Government scheme thus ensuring capital protection.
  • Helps you face inflation, provided the inflation rate is below the interest rate provided by PPFs. Additionally, the Government reviews the PPF rates quarterly.
  • PPF provides tax benefits – Exempt, Exempt, Exempt (EEE):
  • The maturity amount, interest earned and deposits are completely tax-free.
  • Also, the sum invested in PPF is eligible for tax deduction under Section 80(C) up to a maximum of 1.5 lakhs.

 

If EEE is the tax status you are looking for your investments, then why do it for 8 % returns when you can receive the same status for returns between 9-14% or more? Yes, with MyWay Wealth you can invest in National Pension Scheme (NPS), which was started by the Indian Government under the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA), with the initiative to provide pension opportunity to every Indian and inculcate the habit of saving for retirement. NPS also receives tax exemptions on the deposits made, interest earned and the maturity amount.

Read more on NPS in the blog post: How to plan your retirement with National Pension System (NPS)?

 

  1. When

When can I withdraw my funds?

Though PPF has stringent lock-in period and withdrawal protocols, it still provides Liquidity:

  • The entire amount can be withdrawn only after the PPF tenure (15- year lock-in + 5-year extension). However, loans are offered against the PPF from the third to the sixth year.
  • Premature closure of PPF takes place in the event of the account holder’s death only. However, to support the needs of medical emergencies or cater to child’s higher education, PPF has also proposed early closure after 5 years of its completion.
  • To provide cover in cases of financial crises partial withdrawals are permitted. Such withdrawals are allowed once a year, from the 7th year onwards and are subject to conditions such as:
  • withdrawals must not exceed 50 percent of the balance at the end of the fourth year, or
  • 50 percent of the balance at the end of the immediately preceding year, whichever is lower.

 

The major objective of a PPF account is to create long term savings because the minimum investment tenure is 15 years. In this case, investing in Mutual Funds makes more sense because you can earn returns more than 15% as opposed to 8% with PPF. Some of the funds that give >15% returns for a 5-year investment are:

At the same time, liquidity is also a crucial factor for investment. After all, it is your money and you must be able to access it when there is a need or an emergency. If you have objectives that need a smaller time period, then you can invest your savings in Short Duration Mutual Funds.

Here are some short term funds (between 1- 3 years) that provide returns more the 8%:

Curious to know Top Funds in other Mutual Fund categories? You can do so by reading: Top Rated Mutual Funds in Different Categories

 

  1. Who

Who is eligible for a PPF?

You are eligible to open a PPF account if you are a resident of India. And there is no age barrier for enrolling yourself with PPF. This is generally seen as a good option for investors who have a low-risk appetite and are looking for definite returns.

A minor can also hold a PPF account through the guardian.

 

  1.  Where

Where do I open a PPF account?

You can open a PPF account from:

  • State Bank of India (SBI) and branches of its associated banks.
  • Nationalized banks such as Bank of India, Bank of Maharashtra and Bank of Baroda.
  • Head or general post office.
  • ICICI Bank, Axis Bank and various such as private sector banks

All you need is:

  • Aadhar card or acknowledgment of your Aadhar application, in case of its absence.
  • Identity proof: Aadhar card, passport, PAN, driving license, voter’s ID, ration card or Form 60 or 61 as per Income Tax Act 1961.
  • Account opening form.
  • Two passport size photos.

Or, if your end goal is just to save up for retirement and you don’t like this tedious offline process and cumbersome paperwork, then you can sign up on MyWay Wealth and complete the paperless KYC in 5 minutes to build your retirement corpus by investing in National Pension Scheme (NPS) or Retirement Funds.

Pointers:

  • You can start your PPF account with just Rs. 100/-.
  • The minimum deposit is of Rs. 500 and the maximum is Rs. 1,50,000 in a financial year.
  • You have the flexibility to make deposits in one go, or through installments made monthly, quarterly, half-yearly or yearly.
  • Remember to carry your original identity proof at the time of opening the account for verification purpose.
  • Don’t forget to choose a nominee.

It’s necessary to have a fund for your retirement as it is essential to take care of your expenses when you retire and continue to cover the needs of your family or dependents. At the same time, what happens to your family in case of your untimely death? That is also an unseen possibility in the future. Right? To secure your family in such an event, it’s necessary you also consider Term Insurance as an investment option in which the beneficiaries of your term insurance policy will get the guaranteed amount that would help them continue the lifestyle you had provided them financially.

With MyWay you will be able to provide a cover of 1 crore to your family by just paying more or less the same amount you require to get your Netflix subscription. All you need is a few minutes to input your personal details, annual income and choose the life cover your family requires.

Why should I consider an alternative for PPF?

Though Public Provident Fund is one of the most trusted instruments to build your retirement corpus, it also has its drawbacks. And to overcome these drawbacks you choose Mutual Funds or NPS as an ideal investment option. Let’s see why:

  • The amount that can be invested in a PPF account is limited to Rs. 1.5 lakh per year. But with Mutual Funds and NPS, there is no limit on the amount you can invest.
  • PPF offer less liquidity. You cannot withdraw your funds until the completion of 7 years. But with Mutual Funds, you can retrieve your money at any time from most of the investment plans.

Want to read more on Retirement? Check: Retirement Planning

Mutual Funds are best known to provide plans that suit your investment horizon, risk appetite and financial need. To gain access to these tailor-made funds, you can invest in MyWay Wealth, India’s most trusted app for Direct Plan Mutual Funds. MyWay specifically provides funds for your retirement goal. All you need to do is choose the year you would retire, pick your retirement lifestyle and begin investing small amounts every month through SIPs (Systematic Investment Plans). Signup up on MyWay now: Invest Now.

So begin your investment with MyWay Wealth app.

Start today, and reap the benefits in the days to come!

Gold or Mutual Funds?

Gold or Mutual funds ?

As women, we love to show off our jewelry as they define our social status, lifestyle and earning capacity. Weddings, anniversaries or Akshaya Tritiya, we rush to get our favorite ornament made of gold. Why?
We hear our moms and grandmoms say, “Buy Gold, it would help when you are in need of money”. Meaning, traditionally Gold is not just a piece of jewelry but is considered as an investment.
Then why does the business magnate, Warren Buffett, does not invest in Gold?
He says: “It doesn’t do anything but sit there and look at you.”

They say investments in Mutual Funds fetch better returns. Do I choose Mutual Funds or Gold? Which one’s better?
Let me list down the differences between the two, that will help answer the above question and help you to make the right choice.

 

Investment in Gold

Investment in Mutual Funds

  • Gold is not affected by market conditions.
  • The process of investing gold and managing investments is an individual’s responsibility.
  • Fear of theft or loss of purity is more as Gold is a physical asset.
  • Diversification can happen only if one chooses to invest not just in Gold, but in silver, or other mining products.
  • Value of Gold is more hence the amount you invest in Gold would naturally be high.
  • Gold remains to have the same value unless someone buys it at a higher price.
  • Gold incurs making charges and wastage
  • Mutual funds are affected by market conditions so there is potential to earn higher returns.
  • Mutual Funds are handled by Professional Fund Managers who perform research and guide your investments in Mutual Funds.
  • Mutual funds are invested in stocks, bonds, or Gold ETFs, they are electronic or online investments.
  • Mutual funds provide the option of diversification as it allows investment in bonds, cash, or commodities like gold and other precious metals.
  • Initial Investment in Mutual Funds can be as small as Rs. 500 Read More: Let your money grow
  • Mutual Funds have no such charges, in fact, investment in Direct Mutual Funds don’t even have commission charges.

Does this mean I cannot invest in Gold? No, they are better ways to invest in Gold.

Yes, MyWay Wealth, India’s most trusted app for Direct Plan Mutual Funds, allows you to invest in Gold through Gold Funds, where:

  • There are no making charges, thus it ensures more gold for your money.
  • No Worries about theft and no additional locker is required or safekeeping charges.
  • No purity issues, unlike physical gold
  • You can start investing in gold with as less as Rs. 500.
    Explore: Top Rated Gold Funds
    So switch from Gold to Gold Funds and earn the best returns on your investment.

Start Investing in MyWay Wealth!

Have you started saving for your child’s future?

savings for child's future

“An Investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”
–Benjamin Franklin

Designing and drafting your child’s education can be one of the major goals you will have as a parent. A father always wants his son or daughter to be more educated than him and hence would want to provide them with a quality education. But acquiring a quality education is becoming expensive from the past few years. To be able to provide your child with a bright future, it is necessary to start saving for your child’s education early.

Currently, an Engineering course costs anywhere between 6-10 lakhs in India, but ten years down the lane, it would cost 15-20 lakhs. It is said that there will be a time when global education brands may come to India and their fees will be very high. And obviously, you want your children to get the best of education.
So, here are some ways parents can save for their child’s education:

1. Sukanya Samriddhi Account for your daughter

This scheme was launched by the Prime Minister 4 years ago on 22 January 2015 as a part of the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign. The account can be opened anytime, by the parents or the guardian, between the birth of a girl child and the time she attains the age of 10 years. It currently provides an interest rate of 8.5%. This scheme encourages young parents to build a fund for future education and marriage expenses. The account can be opened at any authorized commercial banks or Indian Post Office. Only one account per child is allowed. A minimum of ₹250 must be deposited in the beginning thereafter any amount in multiples of ₹100 can be deposited and the maximum limit is ₹1,50,000. Read More on Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana

2. Tax-free bonds

Tax-free bonds are types of financial products which the government enterprises issue. Municipal bonds are one of its kind. They offer you a fixed interest rate and hence is a low-risk investment. They generally have a long-term maturity of typically ten years or more. The interest rate is currently 6.5%.

3. Bank Deposits

  • Savings Account- A savings account can be opened at a retail bank that provides interest of 3-4%. Check: Savings Account vs Liquid Funds
  • Fixed deposit account – A fixed deposit (FD) is a financial product provided by banks which gives investors a higher rate of interest than a regular savings account. Generally, the rate of interest ranges between 5-8%. Explore: What are Fixed Deposits?
  • Recurring deposit Account – This is a kind of Time Deposit provided by banks in India which help people with regular incomes to deposit a fixed amount every month into their account and earn interest at the rate applicable to FDs. Read More: Bank Recurring Deposits

We all want our children to have a bright future. Then why settle at 6.5-8.5% returns when you can earn returns between 12-16% or more and save better for your child’s future? Yes with MyWay Wealth you can invest in Mutual Funds using the option called ‘Save for a goal’ under which you can save for your “Child’s education” which invests your savings based on your requirements.

Requirements MyWay

So, if you want quality education for your children, you have to spend more. And to be able to spend more we should have surplus funds to finance the educational needs rather than sacrificing other requirements. So, don’t take a cut on your returns, instead invest in Mutual Funds and save a large corpus for your child’s future.

Invest Now..Plan Ahead with MyWay Wealth!

A Fund for every Emergency!!

emergency funds

I am sure we all have heard this phrase quite often in our lives. But the question is why should one be prepared for adversity? Let’s look at an example.

My father always reminds me to wear a helmet whenever I ride a two-wheeler. He also follows the rule that a pillion rider must wear a helmet (I must admit here, that I hate to wear a helmet as it messes up my hairstyle).

One fine morning, my dad had to drop me to college. Both of us wore our helmets and left our home. On our way, we were hit by an auto. The auto driver was trying to avoid a cop and took the road which was one way and collided with us.

The cop caught the auto driver. My dad and I escaped with a few bruises. I must admit the helmet came to our rescue. If not for the helmet, I would have hit my head on the divider. It’s better to be protected because like Ceat Tyres say “The Streets are filled with idiots”.

I also remember my father’s advice Save money for the rainy day”.  We all want to stay away from risk and be well prepared for an unplanned event, right? The same applies to our money or hard earned savings. The common fear amongst people today is that they hesitate to look into long term investments. They feel that if their money is locked up in a long term investment, it prohibits them to use their own money during an emergency.  This is definitely a genuine reason to be afraid of. Situations such as accidents, health issues, job loss, etc. are uninvited guests and one needs money in terms of liquid cash to be able to face such situations. Hence people avoid long- term investments and resort to more liquid instruments such as bank deposits so that they are able to use their money when they need it.  

But does that mean one can never invest in long-term investments? The answer is NO; there are indeed other ways one can invest in order to set aside money for emergencies.

Thus, arises the need for an “Emergency Fund”.  

We typically need emergency funds for two reasons:

  • for planned events which are under our control.
  • unplanned events which are definitely out of our control.

For example, House Rent is an expense that you would have every month and for fixed intervals. Similarly, expenses like servicing a car/bike, EMI, School fees, etc. are events that can be forecasted and one can control the nature of these events by having a well-structured budget plan.

But what happens in situations that are uncalled for? Like an accident or a medical emergency. These situations are likely to happen and without an emergency fund, one is seldom prepared. Let’s take the example of the 2018 Crisis caused in Kerala due to the unusually high rainfall during the monsoon season. Who would except thirty-five out of the fifty-four dams within the state to open for the first time in history? The situation was declared as Level 3 calamity meaning, calamity of a severe nature”. Many people lost their lives and their properties to these floods. Most parts of Kerala required and still requires massive restructuring in terms of infrastructure. To face such situations it is always important to have emergency funds.

But this fund will be used only in case of a financial crisis and you will not access it until the need arises, meaning one cannot use it for a planned event such as the down payment of the house. This is only for unexpected and crucial emergencies.

A friend of mine recently switched jobs. A job that he had been dreaming to join for quite some time. His joining date was in another week or so. Even though he had savings from his previous employment and with the hopes of a better salary from new employment, he bought a four-wheeler on a bank loan. To his surprise, the company he was supposed to join went on a hiring freeze and informed him that there would be a huge delay in his date of joining. And once the freeze was removed they would consider his employment again. This was a situation which was clearly uncalled for. This meant that he had to take care of all his expenses and the EMI with the savings from his previous employment, which was not much.

Situations like hiring freeze don’t happen often. They are events not anybody would want to face, but one doesn’t have a choice.

My friend managed to borrow some funds from his family, cut down on his expenses, forwent few Friday parties and paid his EMI on time. After about 3 to 4 months, his job started and his life was back to normal.

An emergency fund acts as an oxygen mask during such situations.

But how much do I need to set aside in an emergency fund?

I’ll answer this question with a help of a table.

Your situation The amount to set aside for Emergency Fund
Single and no dependents 6 months’ living cost
Double income family (you and your spouse both are working) and no dependents 3 months’ living expense
Single income family with dependent parents and children A year’s living cost

Living cost here includes everything like rent, EMI, school fees, utilities, premium, credit card charges, club memberships, and many more. Remember these are only average estimates, one’s need can always differ from another based on personal situations, so you can increase or decrease the amount as required.

If your family is risk-averse and then it’s best to make it a habit to keep a year’s expense as an Emergency Fund.

Where do I keep this money?

The point of emergency food is that it is easily accessible. One option could be Savings Deposit, but make sure that it has a sweep-in feature. An account with the sweep-in feature will earn you more interest than the normal savings account which is between 3.5% to 7%.  The point to be taken into consideration is “Liquidity of the funds”. You need to move it to a place where it is not easy to access the money and resist the temptation of withdrawal, at the same time it must fetch you good returns and must be liquid enough to access it.

People usually pick the option of Fixed Deposits. Fixed deposits are safe and reliable. They provide you fixed returns on a fixed interest rate. Speaking about liquidity, Fixed Deposits are not very flexible. Fixed Deposits come with a maturity period. The money deposited in the bank cannot be withdrawn until the tenure is completed. If you wish to do a premature withdrawal due to an emergency or need, then you will be subjected to penalties, hence losing a portion of your gain. Also, the amount earned from Fixed Deposits is taxable depending on the current tax slab that you fall into. However, certain banks provide Flexi – Fixed Deposits, allowing you to take the amount you need rather than breaking the entire deposit. The alternate option is to split the emergency fund into smaller Fixed Deposits, thereby you don’t lose the interest on the entire deposit. Read More on: Are Fixed Deposits a good investment option?

Another wise decision would be Short Term Debt Mutual Funds. Mutual funds are an investment vehicle that pools in money from small investors and invests the money in the securities market.  In particular, Short term debt mutual funds have a maturity period between 1 to 3 years. Considering the fact that if your new to mutual funds, then short term funds provide lower returns but are less risky compared to the equity funds. Read More on Top Rated Short Term Funds

Another option could be an investment in a Balanced Fund. One can invest a larger portion, say 70% in bonds and 30%, the smaller chunk in stocks (the percentages can vary as per your need and risk appetite). Thereby increasing the chances of receiving higher returns and managing the risk too. Read More on Top Rated Balanced Funds

All said and done. Needs differ so does Risk Appetites. One has to look into the extent of risk one can take and then choose the ideal amount to set aside as an Emergency Fund.

The easy method is to set a monthly target for your emergency fund and keep crediting your emergency account or provide standing instructions to your bank for the same. Upon reaching the desired amount required for an ideal Emergency Fund, you can stop funding it.

Where do I keep the surplus money?

Once you have set aside and planned your emergency fund, the surplus that’s left can be used to invest in long term investments. Any investment for more than 5 years has to be made in Equities because equities perform best when you remain invested for a long period.

The market is volatile, I don’t want to risk it! is this the problem? Well to address this concern MyWay Wealth provides 3 thumb rules:

  • For emergency funds, consider putting the emergency corpus in portions of Liquid Funds and Savings Account (with Sweep-in feature).
  • If you require money in the next 3 – 5 years, then you must put them in Government fixed income instruments or Debt Mutual Funds.
  • If you require money anytime after 5 years then you must put the money in diversified Equity Funds or Balanced Funds.

These rules don’t just help you with managing your personal finance, but also makes sure that your not placing all the eggs in the same basket i.e. you are diversifying the risk by placing your investment in various instruments as per your goal. Also, the advantage of mutual funds is that your investments are controlled and monitored by an Expert/ Professional Fund Managers. They help you in managing your mutual funds and also rebalance the investment portfolio regularly.

Where do I find these funds?

MyWay Wealth – India’s most trusted app for Mutual Funds. With MyWay, you get access to various categories of funds, from liquid funds to Balanced Funds, from short term to long term funds and from Debt Mutual Funds to Equity Funds. It is your one-stop destination to fulfill all your investments needs.

So hope this article helped in understanding the need to have an Emergency Fund. Remember its important to plan your finances rather than delaying your investments due to the fear of risk.

Think Smart, Think MyWay Wealth

Investment lessons from Mahabharata!!!

The best childhood memory still fresh in my mind is the one where my grandfather told me the mythological story’s about Lord Krishna and his magic tales. I always imagined the scene in which Krishna advised Arjuna on the Chariot. This scene had left a huge impact on my teenage life. I decided my life goal after listening about it. It wasn’t an advisor; it was to become a chariot rider. Turns out, I am an adviser and not a chariot rider. Such a disaster!
Being an advisor let me walk you through some investment lessons from Mahabharata. Allow me to be your Krishna for once!

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8 Personal finance changes that have kicked in April on-wards

Take a look at these 8 changes:

1. Re-introduction of LTCG at 10% on equity and equity mutual funds: Equity and equity oriented mutual funds were tax free but now, all long term capital gains above Rs. 10 lacs are taxable at 10% flat tax rate.

2. Dividend Distribution tax: Dividend for equity/equity oriented mutual funds are tax free. However, from this year the same will be taxable subject at a 10% dividend distribution tax. While dividends in the hands of investors will remain tax-free companies paying taxes will have to pay the tax proceeds.

3. Standard deduction introduced: Standard deduction is a flat income deducted from the salary prior to the calculation of taxable income. Standard deduction is provided upto Rs. 40,000 from salary income to employees. Pensioners will benefit from the move who did not use to get travelling or medical expenses (If you are a pensioner, read our blogposts on “Pension” to know more).

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