Tuesday, September 27, 2011

TOP 5 TAX SAVING FIXED DEPOSIT (FD)


Tax saving FDs offered by banks in India are good option for someone looking to save tax under Sec 80 C without taking any risk that is inherent in equity exposure that ELSS offers. So, if you are one of those conservative investors who want to save tax via FDs , then it would be pertinent to know which banks are offering you the best deal currently. 


Following are the 5 best Tax saving FDs that are being currently on offer ( as on Sept 11).


 Rank   Bank                                Rate On Int.(p.a.)  Rs 10000 will grow 
 1.   Tamilnad Mercantile Bank    10%                             Rs16386.
 2.    City Union Bank                   9.75%                           Rs 16186
 3.    IDBI Bank                            9.50%                           Rs 15991
 4.    Punjab And Sind Bank         9.50%                           Rs 15991
 5.    State Bank of Travancore   9.50%                           Rs 15991


Happy investing!!   

Monday, September 26, 2011

BANK CASH TRANSACTION FROM MOBILE PHONE


There have been times , when we have been faced with situation of transferring money from bank account to another account without visiting bank branch. One can do cash transactions via netbanking if one doesnt want to visit the branch or the branch timings are over. But what if we in a place where internet isnt available and we need to transfer cash immediately . Relax, we have a solution now. Resereve Bank Of India has now allowed cash transaction upto Rs 50000 from mobile phones . To do so , we need to follow the following steps:-

1. Register with the bank for interbank Mobile Payment Service (IMPS).
2. Download the application on the mobile phone.
3. Log in to the application
4. Select bank account from which funds are to be transferred.
5. Select mobile money transfer service.
6. Enter 10 digit mobile number, 7 digit MMID and desired amount to be transferred.
7. Confirm all the details.
8. Done. You will recieve sms confirming the same.

PROS OF THE FACILITY

1. Another platform to do non branch based cash transaction besides netbanking .
2. Ease of operation is huge since we are all with our mobuile phones virtually at all times.
3. Increased penetration of banking services in underbanked areas where bank branches arent available.

CONS OF THE FACILITY

1. Cash transactions of upto Rs 50000 only can be done via this platform as of now.
2. Traning could be an issue for rural folk who are very tech savvy.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

WANT TO INVEST IN GOLD??

"The desire for gold is the most universal and deeply rooted commercial instinct of the human race."
Gerald M. Loeb
The above mentioned adage perfectly sums up the love investors have showered on the precious metal since times immemorial. This metal has retained its numero uno pisition as the "Metal of choice" over centuries. So what really makes this metal so desirable inspite of its very limited medicinal or industrial usage? Following are just the few of many reasons responsible for the same :
1. Its widespread use in Jewellery - It has always been used a metal of choice when it comes to Jewellery. In India, for instance, most of the gold demand is on account on Jewellery .This demand for gold jewellery has made India one of the leading countries as far as gold consumption is concerned.
2. It was used as Currency - Gold emerged as a major currency very early during human civilization where kings across continents used gold coins as currency in their respective kingdoms. It was also used as base for new "paper currency" which sovereign governments printed , till very recently. It is still considered as hedge against dollar , the world's reserve currency.
3.Excellent hedge against inflation - Investors flock to gold because it has been proven beyond doubt that it is the best asset class which provides hedge against inflation . Gold investment protects the purchasing power of your investment/portfolio.
HOW TO INVEST IN GOLD?
Now, if you are wondering how does one invest in gold , then you may want to explore following 3 options:
1. Investment in Gold Mining Funds - You can invest in funds that invest in gold mining funds such as AIG World Gold and DSPBR World Gold Fund. This option will help you own the world's gold reserves and hence as and when gold as an asset class does well, these mining firms will do well and consequently , you as an investor will do well.
2. Gold ETFs - Next, you can invest in paper gold through gold exchange traded fund (ETF), wherein you buy the gold units from the stock exchange for which you need a demat account to buy and sell the units on the stock exchange.
3. Gold Fund of Funds - And more recently, you have the option of investing in a gold fund of fund, such as Reliance Gold Savings, Kotak Gold and SBI Gold fund, which are all passively managed fund of fund that invests in the open-ended Gold Exchange Traded Fund of their fund houses, which in turn invests in physical gold with 99.5 per cent purity. This structure is convenient for those who do not have a Demat account and want to start a systematic investment plan in gold.

Depending on your convenience and investment needs; you can consider any of the options to invest in gold. Amongst the investing option; ETFs and gold funds should be better for the liquidity they offer and the fact that these invest into physical gold, their value will be closest to that of gold.


PRECAUTIONS TO TAKE WITH YOUR CHEQUEBOOK

We all use our cheque leaves while making payments to various parties/paying bills etc , but, have we ever wondered what all can go wrong with these cheque leaves? There have been numerous cases of fraud , where the modus operandi has been misuse of the cheque leaf. Hence it is imperative to know ,first, what all can go wrong and then what safeguards to take with your cheque leaves.

What Can Go Wrong?

1. Cheque can be misused - Lot of fraudsters tamper with the cheque which one writes by adding a name of account number , making alteration, adding digits etc and then countersigning on it. This way they loot the unsuspecting guy , his hard earned money.

2. Cheque can be assigned - Since cheques are negotiable instruments , it can be assigned from one person to another and as such , one can simply cut the beneficiary name and assign the cheque in ones own name and then bank it with his own banker. This was he wont have to forge the drawers signature. He simply will have to sign for the beneficiary and since the beneficiary's account may not be with the presenting bank /accepting bank , it is difficult to spot the fraud. But thankfully only few cooperative banks do accept cheques which are "assigned to third party".

What safeguards to take?
1. Always keep chequebook in safe custody - This is the most basic precaution that one must take. Safe custody of the cheque book will ensure that it does not reach in rogue element's hands easily and thus the chances of its misuse is that much lesser.

2. Always give "Account Payee" cheque - Wherever possible avoid giving "Self" or "Bearer" cheques since that opens up lot of possibility of fraud. Anyone with that cheque can go to any branch and get that encashed since it is an open cheque drawn in favour of the presenting party without mentioning its name. So avoid it.

3. Always write the name of beneficiary - Always mention the name of the beneficiary to whom the cheque is being issued. This will enable the bank to cheque Identity details of the presenter in case of any doubt etc. Also as a prudent banking practise, banks do check ID proof before giving large value cash withdrawals to unknown person. So a name on the cheque rather than just"Self" or " bearer" would help.

4. Never leave Blank spaces in the cheque leaf - Always try to use the full space of the cheque without leaving any space which may be used later for adding name or account number etc. You may cancel the empty space by striking it with a line .


5. Dont hand over PDCs to sales executives - In lot of fraud cases, Sales executives from Bank DSAs collect PDCs from the customer even before the loan is disbursed/or is about to be disbursed. These cheques then are used by the executives to siphon off the funds from the customers account. Hence, avoid giving PDCs to executive, you must give it to the branch or loan disbursal centre with proper acknowledgement. Also never give cheque without any beneficiary details (lot of people do it) since execs tell them that they will fill that portion later. The same portion may be used by execs to write their own name and thus they are able to withdraw amount from unsuspecting customers.


If you follow these basic guidelines, then I am sure you will be able to stay out of these fraudsters who are out to make quick buck at your expense.