New Delhi: The number of Systematic Investment Plans (SIPs) in mutual funds has more than doubled to 134 lakh in two-and-half years, primarily on account of increased awareness among investors and buoyancy in equity markets, Parliament was informed today. SIP is an investment vehicle that allows investors to invest in small amounts periodically instead of lump sums.
The frequency of investment is usually weekly, monthly or quarterly. As of 31 October this year, the number of SIPs in mutual funds in India was 134.5 lakh, minister of state for finance Arjun Ram Meghwal said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
SIPs increased from 60 lakh as on 31 March 2014 to 90.2 lakh at the end of 31 March 31 2015. They increased further to 116.3 lakh at the end of the last fiscal. Meghwal attributed the higher number of SIPs to rising awareness among investors, focus on other than top 15 cities by mutual fund houses and general buoyancy in stock markets.
“The Sensex remaining continuously above the 22,000 levels in 2014-15 and 2015-16 and above 24,000 level during 2016-17 has led to renewed interest in SIPs from investors," Meghwal added.
Besides, markets regulator Sebi has taken a number of steps to create awareness regarding SIP investment including investors’ awareness programme and extra incentives for those expanding into smaller cities and use of regional languages in investors education material related to mutual funds, he added. The number of SIPs from other than top 15 cities has risen from 29.6 lakh as on 31 March 2014 to 63.1 lakh at the end of 31 October 2016.