The country’s continuing equity boom may not have significantly helped the small investor so far, but if ongoing efforts are stepped up, the coming years may very well see small investors become more comfortable about putting money into the stock market. As Mint reports today, the government seems keen on improving investor protection levels.
The small investor, who was badly burnt in the scam-depressed 1990s and the technology flops of the early 2000s, has been slowly returning to the market. Any move to attract more such investors is welcome. That only a minuscule share of India’s considerable household savings flows into organized financial assets implies an opportunity cost for both the economy and the investors.
But investor protection is one part of the story. It has to be in tandem with greater awareness of risks and access to suitable products and services. Here, market regulator Sebi’s role gets even bigger in preventing fraud.