Birla Sun Life, IDFC, MFs cap investment

Funds seldom close their doors to investors, though it’s a good move to take only so much money as can be easily managed. Birla Sun Life MF has capped the maximum amount an single investor can put in its Birla Sun Life Government Securities Fund–Long Term Plan to Rs2 crore. IDFC Premier Equity Fund (IPEF), a mid- and small-cap equity fund, closed its doors earlier in October. You can invest in IPEF through a systematic investment plan, but lumpsum investments are not allowed yet.

By capping its inflows, Birla MF aims to cater this fund to small- and medium-sized investors instead of companies, who typically invest large sums of money for a very short duration. Currently, the scheme’s corpus stands at Rs15 crore and the MF aims to limit itself to a size which helps it nimbly move between different stocks.

Apart from keeping corporate investors away at times, such moves bode well for existing investors, especially in a mid-cap fund such as IPEF. This is because mid- and small-cap funds invest in small-sized companies that can be pretty illiquid in volatile markets. It’s, therefore, important for MFs to have reasonable exposure in these companies so that it is easier for them to exit such stocks whenever it wants. Good examples set in an otherwise assets-hungry MF industry.

Banking, brokerage on single platform

Yes Bank Ltd and India Infoline Ltd have joined hands to offer banking and brokerage services.

The bank’s customers will now be able to trade in equity shares—online or offline—on the National Stock Exchange or the Bombay Stock Exchange, in the cash as well as in derivatives segments on a single platform.

The offering will work as a three-in-one account. While the savings account and the depository participant (DP) account will be with Yes Bank while the broking account will be with India Infoline.

Customers of Yes Bank and India Infoline will have to pay charges as applied by their respective institutions.

In a telephonic interview, Suresh Sethi, group president (transaction banking), Yes Bank, says, “In the revenue model supporting this partnership, each organization will accrue earnings from their respective products that is savings account, DP account and brokerage." Bindisha Sarang

DCB launches free wealth management

Development credit Bank Ltd (DCB) has introduced a wealth management advisory service which will be available to all its account holders free of cost.

This service will provide customers detailed advice on how to invest in mutual funds and other options. The bank has hired 60 certified financial planners for the purpose.

Praveen Kutty, executive vice-president and head (retail banking), DCB, says: “The wealth management service would cover three heads. One, surplus management which means investments. Two, deficit management as in loans and, three, risk management as in insurance products. "

The bank will neither charge any service fee for enabling mutual fund investments, nor for other related banking services. Kutty says, “There are banks that charge 0.5-2% for such services, but our customers get it absolutely free."

Customers, who invest at least Rs5 lakh, will get special services, such as constant monitoring of their investment portfolios, among other things.

The bank will do thorough research before doling out advice to its customers. It has tied up with Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency Online Ltd, an information services and technology solutions provider, to assist it in the research. Bindisha Sarang