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The Life Savers Called Online FDs


wealthymattersThe one good think about fixed deposits is the absolute predictability of returns, as long as they are not closed prematurely. Add to this that unlike a lot of other fixed income instruments, fixed deposits are available for all tenures upto 10 years, and you can now use fixed deposits to design your own financial products.

The only drawback is the extremely low deposit insurance  in India.The Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation provides insurance to each customer of a Scheduled Bank for deposits up to Rs 1 lakh in case of  bank failure. This limit is applicable across all the deposits, including savings, current, fixed and recurring. This limit remains Rs 1 lakh even if the sum of all deposits (including accrued interest) exceeds the same. Worse, non-scheduled banks ,companies and other institutions offering fixed deposits don’t provide this small comfort either. Of of what use is predictability of returns if basic security and return of capital is not guaranteed ? Read more of this post

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Investing Like An Indian Politician


wealthymattersThe one thing career politicians in India know is that income often comes in fits and starts and there is a need to provide for necessities and expenses in the meantime.

Here’s what a lot of them will do.

1.FDs in the name of every family member not qualifying to fall in the tax-net. That way some regular income for necessary expenses is always generated.

2.Land: Invest in land in appreciating location.Agricultural land purchased on any national highway at distance of 15 to 25 kms from the city centre of big cities have tended to double in 2-3 years and so make excellent main appreciating assets .Take up agriculture yourself or let out the land to other farmers for rent .So your income will be tax free and the underlying asset will appreciate as well. Regularly sell land on appreciation and move away further to grow capital. Urban land too works but community activities on it are not tax free. Read more of this post

PAN Cards And FDs


wealthymatters.comUnder section 139A of the I-T Act,only persons whose income is chargeable to tax are required to obtain a PAN.However section 206 AA of the same Act, which became effective from assessment year 2010-11, makes it mandatory for every person to furnish PAN card in their transactions with banks and financial institutions.So section 206AA compeled even those without a taxable income to obtain a PAN, failing which tax would be deducted at source.

A writ petition was filed before the Karnataka High Court by A Kowsalya and two other small investors, who had made investments in financial institutions (F Is). They do not have any income other than the income received from F I s and they have declared this under Form 15G. Form 15G is usually used for declaring that a person’s income is below taxable limit, and therefore, the bank or FI is not required to deduct tax at source while making payments.The FIs, however, told the petitioners that tax would be deducted at source if they did not furnish PAN cards as required under section 206AA of the Income-Tax Act. The petitioners challenged the validity of Section 206AA of the Income-tax Act in their writ petition. Read more of this post

Liquid Funds + USTBs Vs. FDs


Here is a video laying out the pros and cons of investing in liquid and liquid plus funds vs FDs.Where you invest will depend on the guarantees you seek,the amount you wish to deposit,the interest rate scenario in future,prevailing interest rates,tax liabilities,the use you wish to put your cash to in future etc.Do watch the video before you decide either way.

Personally I have found that sometimes you get short term FDs that offer better rates for senior citizens than the mutual funds.And the most important takeaway from the video is that FDs can be used to lock in high rates in a falling interest rate scenario.

Recurring Deposits


wealthymatters.comA Recurring Deposit(RD) is a type of term deposit account opened by a person/persons with a bank or a post office wherein the investor or investors deposit a fixed amount of money every month for a fixed tenure . This scheme is meant for investors who want to deposit a fixed amount every month, in order to get a lump sum at the end of the tenure. The interest on RDs normally offered by banks is one percent below Fixed  Deposit(FD) rates compounded quarterly.Often there is nothing extra by way of  interest offered for senior citizens.Otherwise the rules for operating a RD account are the same as that for a FD account.The PO offers a fixed 7.5% interest compounded quarterly for a 5 year term.

RDs are great for people to develop the savings habit.It is especially useful to teach kids to save especially the Post Office Recurring Deposit (PORD) which has a minimum deposit of 10 rupees per month.Often banks package RDs as schemes to become or to make your child a lakhpati,millionaire etc or as schemes to build the down-payment on a house or vehicle.  Read more of this post

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