He is against generalising any form of investment for any age or category of people. He prefers it being specific and personalised to each individual, be it men or women.
He advises against putting all your eggs into one basket, irrespective of how good a particular asset class might look. Based on individual profile, investment profile, time horizon and the goals, an investor needs to make an asset allocation plan wherein he or she decides how much funds will go into equities, how much into debt and how much into any other say real estate or precious stones, he says.
According to him, the idea is to make that kind of an asset allocation plan and allocate money based on that plan, and not as per the timing of the market.
Below is the verbatim transcript of Harshvardhan Roongta's interview on CNBC-TV18
Q: Do you think women are perhaps better placed to be making financial decisions and are you seeing a lot more women come to you for queries, I don't want to say anything but perhaps we are just intrinsically better organisers of finances?
A: Women otherwise are known to be better organised then men. I am not getting into comparing the habits of people but generally I would say that since women have multiple roles, they work, manage their house and office as well. So, the idea is in recent times we are seeing women coming forward to take charge of the finances.
Earlier it was all left on their husbands to do it or their parents to take charge of the finances, but recently we have seen that paradigm shift wherein women want to take charge. They are trying to take keen interest in their own finances so that they can be independent and they can take decisions on their own. So, answering your query yes we see that kind of awareness being created these days and hopefully it will only increase as days go by.
Q: Are the rules for women investing different from that of men and secondly just classifying them into three buckets say one single working women, secondly married and working and thirdly married with a family but not working. Most of the women would perhaps fall in one of these three, so what is the advice for each of them?
A: When you talk about personal finance, the requirements and what you do with your money is completely dependent on your current situation. So, if there is a woman who is single there are different goals that she has, there are different requirements that she has so there is a different thing that she does with her money.
So, similarly if there is a woman who is married without children there are different kind of set of investments and if a woman is independent and has a child as well there are different kinds of schemes for them.
So, it will be very difficult to generalise that all women who are not married need to do a particular set of things. All 35 year olds cannot have a simple and a straight forward blanket investment pattern. If a person has some liabilities in the short-term, he needs to make provisions for that vis-à-vis another person who has no liabilities in the short-term makes different set of investments. So, I would say let us not generalise any form of investment for any age or a category of people, let it be very specific and personalised to each individual, be it men or women.
Caller Q: I have some investment in public provident fund (PPF) and my trade period is approaching very soon. I want to invest that money, approximately Rs 7 lakh, in stocks like Reliance Industries ( RIL ), Hindustan Unilever ( HUL ), ITC , Tata Consultancy Services ( TCS ), Infosys , Sun Pharma , Lupin , etc. Is it worth entering maybe via mutual fund or direct equity now to get more returns?
A: The first thing would be that there is a general rule you do not put all your eggs into one basket. So, irrespective of what the market situation or what the conditions currently are you want to take benefits of the market being at lows and there is rupee depreciation. So, if you are considering these things then considering equity because of that reason I would say no, do not do that.
Understand there is a risk in every investment that you make. Like for instance in a bank fixed deposits (FD) there is a risk of inflation, though the capital is safe there is a risk of inflation. In equities there is a risk of capital, but inflation risk is taken care of. So, the idea is irrespective of however good a particular asset class looks at any given point in time you do not put all your eggs into one basket.
Based on each individuals profile, the investment profile, time horizon and the goals you need to make an asset allocation plan wherein you decide how much funds will go into equities, how much into debt, how much into any other say real estate or precious stones.
So, the idea is you need to make that kind of an asset allocation plan for yourself and allocate money based on that plan not as per timing of the market. So, I would suggest if you can take high risk you may chose to allocate more into equity, but not everything into equity. So, answering your query, no I would not suggest that you shift from PPF only because market conditions are favouring equities. You make an asset allocation plan and divide your money and invest accordingly.
Q: Is there a thumb rule on diversification because the caller has her money in fixed deposits, how much of that portfolio should she shift into equity?
A: First parameter of choosing an asset allocation plan, one of the primary factors is age, the other is goals. If a person is young but if she requires the money after two years then she certainly cannot invest into equities irrespective of age being on her side. So, general thumb rule then whatever is her age that much money gets invested into debt. Therefore, whatever her age is, probably that much could be in debt and the rest could be in equities provided she has no short-term requirements with those funds.
Caller Q: Which mutual fund should I invest in?
A: Mutual fund has schemes which suit all types of investors. So, what you have referred to is an asset class which is equity. So, there are different kinds of schemes in equities such as you have funds which invest only into large cap companies, some will invest into mid caps, a combination of them. There are some sector funds which invest only in a particular sector such as banking or pharmaceutical or technology. So, within the equity category there are different kinds of options available within debt - there are investments, there are schemes which allow investors to invest money for couple of days and going up to couple of years.
I do not want to throw up names to you. I want to throw up categories and one of the safest ways to invest into equities is to begin with index funds. So, in case you do not have an index fund in your portfolio, you can choose to invest in an index fund or if you want to start investing into equities again then there is another option available which is a balanced fund, a part of the money that you give, goes into debt and a part into equities. So, to begin with these are the options available.
As you progress into investing and you get comfortable with equity investing, you can choose schemes which are actively managed; you can choose a large cap fund and then going down a midcap and a small cap and then last would be sector fund. So, if you wish to know names in equity schemes then Franklin India Index Fund is one fund you can start with or you can start with an equity aggressive balanced fund, which is in HDFC Prudence Fund and if you want debt aggressive balanced fund then HDFC Monthly Income Plan (MIP) would be a scheme to start with.