Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Is India Ready For Another Gujarat 2001?

On November 13, 2016, while most Indians were busy exchanging their old notes at the banks, in another part of the world, New Zealand was rocked by an earthquake of magnitude of about 7.5 on Richter scale. About 232 aftershocks of the event were recorded in the country by GeoNet, leaving thousands of people stranded near the epicenter.

It brought back haunting memories of what happened in Gujarat back in 2001 and once again raised the question: Are we ready for such disasters?

What Happened in Gujarat?

While the whole nation prepared to celebrate its 52nd Republic Day, Gujarat was shaken awake to one of the worst disasters in the history of India. On the morning of January 26, 2001, an earthquake of magnitude of around 7.9 hit this western state at 8:46 am.

It was a result of the Indian plate pushing towards the Eurasian plate in the North. Although the quake lasted for only two minutes, it claimed over 18,000 lives and 167,000 people were left injured.

The Destruction Caused

  • Out of the 25 districts of the state, 21 were completely destroyed.
  • Kutch was the most affected area and reported around 17,000 deaths.
  • 7,065 children and 9,110 women were reported dead.
  • Around 348 orphans and 826 widows were registered. While some were protected with life or term insurance, many were left financially crippled.
  • The collective economic loss was around Rs. 99 billion.
  • Out of those who were injured, a vast majority was left handicapped.
  • Around 8,000 villages were affected and more than 3,000 health facilities were destroyed.
  • Over 12 million houses were damaged, leaving thousands of people homeless.

The Response

It took years for Gujarat to recover from the disaster. The Gujarat Model of Development was formed to help the health, educational and industrial sectors reach new heights. About 300 international and 150 local NGOs were involved in providing assistance. Financially too, millions of dollars were used to make things normal again. Immediate relief of Rs. 500 crores was announced by the NCCF.

What transpired in New Zealand has once again underlined the importance of better future planning. Today, Gujarat stands strong but policies like term insurance and life insurance are the need of the hour to protect the financial future of your family.

To get these services is easier than it was ever before. Many banks these days also provide instant loans that can be used in times of crisis as well.

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Liquidity Crunch? The Solution Lies Here

When Prime Minister Modi gave a 40-minute speech on November 9, 2016, announcing the demonetization of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 banknotes, the 1.3 billion people of India were taken totally unawares!

There was panic and chaos among the people, since almost 80 percent of the monetary base was wiped out in one fell swoop. What could once guarantee the most upscale clothes and lavish meals, was merely a useless piece of paper now.

While the positive effects can take time to materialize, in the short term, most people are having to bear the brunt of this drastic move. This is especially true for small and medium sized businesses that function largely on liquid cash.

If your business is also suffering due to a liquidity crunch, it is time to consider solutions like bill discounting. Here is what you should know about this solution.

Why is Liquidity So Important?

Now let's talk about the importance of liquidity. Businesses thrive on capital. Without adequate financial support, they are unable to meet their everyday requirements for smooth functioning and revenue generation.

For instance, in order to ensure uninterrupted business functions, business owners need to pay their employees salaries on time, electricity and telephone bills need to be paid, loans need to be cleared, raw materials need to be procured, office stationery needs to be replenished, and so on. While bills and salaries can be transferred directly from the bank, paying vendors and suppliers might be an issue at the present moment.

So, what is the Solution?

Imagine this scenario – you have rendered services to one of your clients and received bills of exchange worth Rs.50, 00,000. But the payment is pending for nearly 3 months, and you require funds right now for your day to day business requirements. You know that it is useless chasing a client for bill payment at a time when they too are facing the same liquidity crunch as you. So what will be your immediate step to tackle this issue be?

One option is to apply for a loan. However, this means that you not only have to fulfill all the eligibility criteria, you also have to find a way to repay the loan amount along with the interest rate. Why burden your business with more liabilities? It is time to reduce liabilities with options like bill discounting.

This facility enables you to trade your receivable in exchange for cash. Also known as invoice discounting, the financial institution takes over your pending invoices, pays you what is due minus the fee, and thereafter the headache of getting money out of the client lies with the NBFC or bank.

The same holds true if you need to pay pending bills. In this case, you could apply for trade finance and tackle your liquidity crunch with ease. 

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

10 hatchbacks that you should look up if you like small cars

With pollution levels and fuel prices hitting unprecedented heights in India, it is little wonder that car drivers have been clamouring for low fuel guzzling engines without compromising on overall driving quality and performance. Since they asked, car manufacturers delivered: The following are the top 10 fuel efficient cars in India, in no particular order:

  1. Maruti Ciaz SHVS diesel hybrid 28.09 kpl: This one’s a mild hybrid variant of the diesel Ciaz, and it is powered by gentler technology to improve on the car’s fuel efficiency. But this is not a little performer: it pushes speeds up to 26.2kpl.

  2. Honda Jazz diesel 27.3kpl: It will remind you of the Celerio in terms of fuel efficiency, and though it powers to a high speed with its 1.5 litre diesel engine, it results in low fuel bills. Plus, it is roomy enough for you and your passengers and stylishly designed.

  3. Tata Tiago diesel 27.28kpl: It is one of the most efficient cars in the country, as regards mileage, fuel and speed delivery. It also helps that this car has a large cabin and boot space, notwithstanding its high price.

  4. Ford Figo Aspire diesel 25.83kpl: This compact sedan packs in quite a punch with its looks, output and most importantly, its fuel efficiency. The Figo range has added a boot to this car, so there’s more storage space as well.

  5. Honda Amaze diesel 25.8kpl: Despite its recent facelift and minor innovations under the hood, this car is still not as good looking as others in its class. Still, it offers good interior design and fuel specs.

  6. Maruti Baleno diesel 27.39kpl: This is one of Maruti’s new premium hatchbacks, offering great good looks, a comely attitude on the roads and excellent fuel efficiency. What’s not to like?

  7. Honda City diesel 26kpl: India’s most popular sedan is still one of its low fuel guzzlers. With low fuel bills, you will love to take this car out for a spin often.

  8. Maruti Swift Dzire diesel 26.59kpl: Car connoisseurs swear by this car’s fuel output, terming it the most fuel efficient car in its class. And this, despite its impressive size.

  9. Ford Figo diesel 25.83kpl: The 1.5 litre diesel engine powers your drive to low fuel consumption and efficient pickup. Plus, it is one of the safest and most well designed hatchbacks in the country.

  10. Maruti Celerio diesel 27.6kpl: Its small 800cc engine packs in quite a punch when you drive it, combined with its lighter kerb weight (about 900kg) makes this car an extremely low fuel guzzler.

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Best Cashback Offers for the Best Products

Who doesn’t like freebies, right? This is exactly the sentiment that a lot of services are trying to capture with their various deals and discounts. And when it come people in India, the first thing that we check before buying any product is the type of discounts available on that particular product.

A thorough market study is done by the consumer before buying anything. They will check multiple brands online and offline to see which will be the most beneficial one, giving us our money's worth. The real reason why we love discounts or cashback offers or any type of benefit for that matter is the satisfaction it gives us that we are getting the maximum value out of the money we are spending. The better the scheme, the more the customer traffic.

DBS’ digibank, along with being your banking partner, also offers a lot of discounts and offers on anything that you can think of. Let's take a look at few of the benefits that digibank offers its customers.


Who doesn't like a free soft drink or a free cupcake with their pizza? What more could you ask for if you are getting a share of the money back from the bills you have paid for the delicious food you are eating? Cashback offers from digibank offer up to 10% off on all the leading food joints, including Dominos, McDonalds, Pizza Hut and more. Apart from these, you also get discounts on ordering anything from Zomato, Food Panda, etc.

It's not just packed or processed food, you can also purchase fresh groceries from Big Basket, Grofers, and Reliance Fresh Direct to avail the same benefits.


After food, it is films that we Indians are most fond of. Digibank respects this love for the motion pictures and offers discounts while booking tickets online. You get up to 30% off on the ticket booking portal, BookMyShow, whenever you buy at least 2 tickets. Considering the fact that you get faster tickets and preferred seats online, on top of getting the best discount, it sounds like a pretty good deal.

Flight Tickets

Want to travel around the world? Why not do it at a lesser price? Traveling can be expensive, considering the cost of flight tickets, hotel charges, etc. But what if you get up to Rs 3,800 back?  This can all happen with the digibank app, which also allows you to make bookings instantly thanks to the mobile app.

There are a lot more offers and discounts to be explored. Why not explore it yourself and be among those who actually get the most out of their money! 

Monday, 13 June 2016

Leading Companies Providing Financial Services In India

Finance corporations in India are playing an important role in taking care of the financing needs of both businesses and individuals alike. These companies are giving a solid boost to our economy too. They deal with a variety of needs, including the best investment options, credit, savings and priority lending. Here is a list of companies providing the best financial services in India.

Top Financial Companies in India

1.      Housing Development Finance Corporation: This is one of the leading providers of home loans in India. Their services include loans taken for home improvement, construction, extension, rural finance, etc. They have a huge presence in India, apart from branches in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Singapore and Qatar. Their customer base includes both residents and non-residents of India.
·         Market capitalization: Rs 193,994.85 cr
·         Share value at BSE: Rs 1227.5
·         Share value at NSE: Rs 1228.25 (as of May 26, 2016)
·         Net Profit: Rs 5990.14 cr (as of March 2015)

2.      Bajaj Finserve: This company focuses on maintaining the most diverse investment portfolio. Bajaj Finserv aims to help its customers to smartly invest money to improve their lifestyle, meet everyday expenses and be financially secure. They offer curated loans and financing options for salaried professionals and self-employed people.

·         Market Capitalization: Rs 28,484.53 cr
·         Share value at BSE: Rs 1790.0
·         Share value at NSE: Rs 1792.15 (as of May 26, 2016)
·         Net Profit: Rs 125.93 cr (as of March 2015)

3.      LIC Housing Finance: The aim of this financial company is to provide long term finance to people for their housing needs. They have a good network in India and also cater to NRIs in the Gulf countries. Financial solutions include loans against securities, along with project and property loans.

·         Market Capitalization: Rs 23,114 cr
·         Share value at BSE: Rs 457.95
·         Share value at NSE: Rs 457.40 (as of May 26, 2016)
·         Net Profit: Rs 1386.19 cr

4.      Larsen and Turbo Finance Holding: This organisation offers financial solutions for the infrastructure, corporate and retail sectors. With a strong presence in a majority of the states in the country, their clients include multinational companies, SMEs and individuals.

·         Market Capitalization: Rs 12,934.20 cr
·         Share Value at BSE: Rs 73.75
·         Share Value at NSE: Rs 73.75 (as of May 26, 2016)
·         Net Profit: Rs 261.63 cr

5.      Aditya Birla Nuvo: This giant business conglomerate provides among the best financial services in India. The organisation is divided into various services, including finance, which comprises several categories like asset management, insurance, capital market, etc. They have a strong foothold in India and aim to provide the best investment options to customers.

·         Market Capitalization: Rs. 13,543.18 cr
·         Share value at BSE: Rs 1040
·         Share value at NSE: Rs 1035.90 (as of May 26, 2016)
·         Net Profit: Rs 527.69 cr (as of March 2015)

Friday, 29 April 2016

Investing for the First Time? Here are Some Tips for Beginners

According to an article in The Hindustan Times in early 2015, there has finally been a predominant trend of household savings in India being funneled towards financial assets instead of physical ones, like gold and property. Experts believe that this is indeed smart money management, since physical assets are no longer providing handsome returns. If you are starting off with investing, the focus should be on mutual fund investments perhaps. We look at some guidelines to follow for first time investors.

Starting off with Investments: Here are Some Options to Consider

Some top investment choices for beginners include:

  1. StocksWhen choosing stocks for investment purposes, beginners should consider seasoned one that have been stable for a period of time. Primarily, these stocks would be the ones belonging to the more established companies, dealing in goods of everyday needs, the demand for which would be sustained despite the economic scenario. For instance, stocks of companies dealing in food items, cleaning agents or personal care items must be considered. These stocks have the ability to rise fast. Therefore, you need to buy when their prices drop and consider selling when prices seem to have peaked. This can help you make profits and provide a boost to your investment plans.
  2. Certificates of DepositFinancial planning in India is incomplete without these risk free investment instruments. Certificates of Deposit entail no risks; however, the returns are fairly low. Besides, there are no quick gains here. You will need to keep your money with the bank for a period of 6 months or more. The bank pays you back with interest, which is not generally very high. If you want to be a seasoned investor with CDs, you can choose three certificates with 1, 2 and 3 year maturity periods, respectively. This way, you can periodically cash out on your investments.
  3. Mutual FundsThese funds are ideal for beginners because they are managed by seasoned investment specialists. An experienced fund manager often succeeds in generating handsome returns for all investors who might have pumped in cash into a fund. Also, mutual fund investments can be started with a very nominal amount and hence easy to manage for beginners.

Above all, you will need an expert investment advisor for help and support. Choose an investment company that understands your needs as a beginner and provides suitable suggestions for building on your investments. The idea is to move from strength to strength and gain confidence as you gain grip on the investments. Your personal interests as well as your comfort levels should be given foremost importance when providing suggestions.

Above all, investments should begin with smart money management. You should start saving early and give yourself more time to build a corpus. Only then can investments reap the best rewards. 

Thursday, 28 April 2016

How to Choose the Correct Mutual Fund for My Needs?

The asset base of equity mutual funds (MFs) surged 13 percent to Rs 3.45 lakh crore at the end of March 2016, compared to Rs 3.05 lakh crore in March 2015, says an article published in The Economic Times in April 2016. Mutual fund investment is considered to be an effective tool for building a significant corpus, whether for the purpose of wealth creation, retirement planning or savings. Being professionally managed, it is ideal for individuals who do not have the time and knowledge to assess the market day-in and day-out. When you invest in an MF, most of your investment decisions are taken by experienced portfolio managers.

Steps to Choosing the Right MF

There are various types of mutual funds in India, including equity, debt and hybrid. Each scheme invests in different types of security. They have a specific objective and carry different levels of risk. You should familiarize yourself with the different types and the risks each one carries before parking your money in any one of them. Here are a few steps to choosing the right money management tool:

 Identify Your Goal – You must identify the objective with which you are investing your money. You can consult a financial advisor, who will assess your expected rate of return, your current financial condition, and risk appetite and investment time horizon to determine the amount of money you must invest and the type of scheme you should opt for.

Choose a Scheme – While choosing a scheme, you need to assess its past performance for the short, medium and long term of 6 months, 3 years and 5 to 10 years, respectively. You must also calculate the risk-adjusted returns of the scheme, comparing the returns offered by the scheme with that offered by securities carrying zero risk, such as government treasury bills. Also, choose a scheme that has consistently surpassed benchmark indices. You can also refer to the ranking provided by various research portals.

Know the Fees – Annual charges and fees for mutual funds in India might include advisory fees, transaction costs and annual management charges. Make sure that you are not exorbitantly charged.

Assess the Fund Manager – Go through the fund manager’s qualification, his past performance and investment style. He should be consistent in his investment style and adhere to the objective of the scheme.

To know more about money management though mutual fund investment, you can consult your financial advisor.