Small savings interest rates: Seniors Spared

small-savings-mof-post-office-ppf-nsc-kvp-banks-recurring-deposit-scheme-senior-citizensThe Narendra Modi government has apparently decided to play safe and not risk a politically sensitive decision by reducing interest rates on small savings.

On Monday, the government left the rates unchanged for the July to September 2016 quarter from what they were for the previous quarter. This marks a stark contrast to March quarter when the government slashed the rates on all small savings schemes, such as public provident fund, Kisan Vikas Patra and time deposits of various maturities.

“Given the furore over the rate cut in March, the government may not want to alienate the middle class before the assembly elections in 2017,” the Economic Times had quoted a mutual fund manager as saying.

You can read the entire story here.

How senior citizens should strategise insurance buying

health-insuranceLifestyle changes with age and so does aspirations. In this case, you have to take a special review of your insurance portfolio, especially after 50 years of age. There are many people who buy different types of insurance policies during their young age. That’s good and it helps in developing a sizeable corpus along with protection against risks.

Nonetheless, after the age of 50, life brings forth many more complications besides the physical feebleness. Retirement issues haunt the mind and responsibilities that have not been fulfilled yet rob most of the space in the life. Since you have spent all your lifetime in procuring the assets and securing your future, you should take care that your belongings are not left astray to various uncertainties. At the same time, it is imperative that you protect yourself and take care of your health to spend the remaining life happily.

Here are a few tips on what should be considered after the age of 50 to optimise the insurance portfolio without losing on any financial aspects.

Health insurance: During old age, you require due care and attention to your health. After 50 years of age, you can focus more on a comprehensive health insurance plan. You might wonder whether or not insurance companies in India offer health insurance to people above 50 years. The answer is: yes.

Until a few years ago, insurance companies were reluctant to provide health insurance coverage to people above 50 years. But now it is different scenario. In 2009, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) categorically asked insurance companies to extend health insurance coverage to people up to 65 years.

The regulator also prevents refusal of health insurance services or undue charging of premium amount due to old age.

There are companies which have specific health insurance plans for people above 50 years age. In fact, many offer coverage against pre-existing conditions and provisions without medical tests. Amount of premium is indeed higher in such cases but that ensures a complete peace of mind.

Some plans also offer additional riders such as provision of medical reimbursement for tests as well. As per the IRDA ruling, the amount of reimbursement in such cases should not be less than 50 per cent.

Life insurance: If you think very logically, you will realise that life insurance is meant to replace policy holder’s income in case of death. It may sound brutal but going by this rationale, you may think of reducing your investment in life insurance premium to an extent which is bare minimum. This amount should be able to provide necessary support to your dependents. Over that, you can invest more in regular income producing instruments.

Naturally, these instruments could be insurance plans that provide a combination of health insurance, life insurance and pension scheme.

You may consider liquidating traditional endowment insurance policy as it may not serve your purpose after a certain age.     

Car insurance: There seems to be no evidence of increase in premium due to the old age of the driver. However, if you have been a responsible driver for quite a long time, insurer may renew your car insurance policy at a comparatively lower rate of premium. If nothing else pays in the old age, experience holds you for what you have achieved in so many years. For the same reason, there are lesser probabilities of you getting into a collision.

Then again, if you have recently got the possession of car and you are new to driving, you should not acquire the car insurance policy in your name in order to avoid the higher premium rate.  But if there is no other choice, insurer may charge higher price against providing you the protection.

You can consider pooling wherever possible, if you need to use car frequently. In that case, you can also prefer other modes of transport. This will not increase the number of miles run by your car and you can ask your insurer to reduce the premium due to the same.

Pension plans: Pension plan is widely used as retirement tool to enhance the savings and increase the financial security during the old age. You must be on the verge of receiving the annuities by now. Even if you do not have any pension plan yet, it is never too late to plan for the future.

You can utilize your savings to acquire a retirement plan. Since you have already reached your age now, you do not need to defer your annuities. Instead, you can pay the lump sum premium for the first and the last time and you are ready to receive annuities as regular monthly income immediately.

A lot of preference is given to senior citizens in India. Moreover, insurance companies have dedicated cells to address the issues of senior policyholders. You just need to keep your insurance documents and birth certificates or related documents handy to smooth out the renewal procedure of existing policies or to make the purchase of new ones an easy task.

This article has been contributed by www.policyx.com.  The views expressed in this article are that of policyx.com and are not necessarily the opinion of Old is Gold Store.

 

Insurance Insight: All you need to know for senior citizens

By Yashish Dahiya Policybazaar.com

yashHealth insurance is more important for the elderly than the others, for the simple reason that, as age advances, one’s vulnerability to diseases and physical conditions increases. Thus, a medical emergency could result in severe financial crisis, unless covered under a comprehensive medical insurance policy. Adding to their apathy is the fact that there are many a number of Health insurers in the country who are not happy to provide senior citizens health insurance because of the higher loss ratios.

The scenario now is changing. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority in one of its recent directives had asked general insurance companies to keep at least 65 years as the maximum entry age for a health insurance policy. This has helped increase the number of health insurance products for senior citizens in the Indian market. Many companies have no come up with health insurance policy specifically designed for senior citizens. For example, Star Health Senior Citizen Red Carpet Plan, Bajaj Allianz Silver Health and many more.

Elaborating a little on these plans, Star Health Senior Citizen Red Carpet policy covers people in the age group of 60-69 years. Although there is copayment of 50%, there are no medical tests required at the time of the payment of the policy. Similarly, Similarly, Bajaj Allianz Silver Plan covers people till the age group of 75 years and the policy can be renewed till 80 years. The Sum Insured options start from Rs 50,000 to Rs 5,00,000. Similarly, Oriental insurance’s plan called Hope states no upper age limit for health insurance and covers 11 specified critical illness diseases like Accidental Injury, Knee Replacement, Cardio Vascular Diseases, Chronic Renal Failure, Cancer, Hepato-Biliary Disorders, Chronic Obstructive Lung Diseases, etc.

There are a couple of things that senior citizens should keep in mind while purchasing health insurance. Firstly, if you are confident about your health then take a health examination and show proof of your good health to a health insurance agent & company. This proves that you might be getting up there in age but there aren’t any high risks that they would have to take yet. Secondly, it’s imperative that good hospitals near the policy holder’s place of residence are under the network hospitals. At the time of emergency, travelling long distance to reach the network hospital is not suitable at all.

Waiting period for pre-existing conditions is also an important aspect to keep in mind when it comes to purchasing health insurance. Lesser the pre-existing cover, the better. Normally, it ranges between 3-4 years for senior citizens. Copayment options should also be considered as it reduces the premium to be paid by the policy holder. Finally, in case of senior citizen plans, it is very important that all the clauses are read and clearly understood. A seemingly normal looking clause can have certain hidden implications; hence, it is advised to consult the company representative to get a perfect clarity.

As the market is abound with options it gets important to go through all the options and then zero down on one to buy the best health insurance policy for the elderly. Ideally, try to compare senior citizen health insurance quotes online from a number of different providers. It allows you to pick and choose from policies and rates and get in touch with a representative of the insurance company to discuss risk and ways you can lower it.  Before you decide on purchasing a certain policy, we would recommend you scan all the possible options and decide on the one that is best healthcare policy suitable for senior citizens. The author is a CEO and co-founder, www.policybazaar.com

Read more at: http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/health-insurance/insurance-insight-all-you-need-to-know-for-senior-citizens_1032194.html?utm_source=ref_article

10 investment tips to lead a peaceful retired life

You may have spent a good part of your life earning hard so that you can lead a peaceful retired life. Yet, the investment challenges for a retired individual remains aplenty. Diminished income flow and steady rise in price of essentials, higher medical needs and lower risk taking ability all add to the challenges. To top it senior citizens, the world over, are victims of mis-selling incidents. Here are a few simple tips to enable you to lead your retired life peacefully:

1.    Emergency kitty

Ensure that you hold a good proportion of your money in liquid instruments to meet medical emergencies. Agreed, that will mean idling way the money in savings bank. But use options such as flexi deposits in your savings bank account, which will sweep excess money from your account into FD and move then back to you savings account when you overdraw. Options such as liquid funds are also good if you wish to build a contingency reserve. They are reasonably safe and can be withdrawn a day after you initiate a redemption transaction.

2.    Diversify

Ensure that you don’t place all your eggs in one basket. You may think that a bank is very safe or a 60-year old finance company cannot go wrong or an investment is guaranteed. We have had instances of banks going bust and finance companies being strapped for cash because their borrowers defaulted. A guarantee is only as good as the strength of the guarantor. Hence, diversify your investments across banks, post offices, companies, government bonds and mutual funds. Even within banks, do not go overboard on a single bank, especially co-operative banks.

3.    Different strokes for different folks

When you invest for your grand child’s future or are investing money on behalf of your children, remember that their need would be ‘wealth creation’ and not ‘income generation’. That means your own risk metric will not apply to them. Take risks that you understand and risks that will reward well in the long term. Consider more regulated and nuanced products such as mutual funds, gold ETFs and debentures in such a case.

4.    Go for top-rated instruments

When you invest in company fixed deposits or corporate bonds, stick to top rated (AAA) bonds and deposits. Most companies other than NBFCs (non-banking finance companies) may not disclose their rating as they are not mandated to. But unless you are in the know of how the company/business works, you are better off sticking to rated instruments. Also do not go for very long tenures of over 3-5 years as companies’ fundamentals can change.

5.    Insure with care

You should have been done with your insurance in your working life. Closer to retirement of later, if your agent comes up with fancies policies linked to markets, be wary. Besides having high premium, a multiple riders would prevent you from enjoying a worthy plan.

6. Assured return claims

Aside of fixed return products such as deposits, no insurance or mutual fund plan can give you assured fixed returns. There are now advertisements (in public places) of commodity/currency trading that promise assured returns. Pay no attention to these.

These are merely speculative bets.

7.    Beware of high returns

If you have not already burnt your fingers in the series of ‘chit fund’ and ‘benefit fund’ scams in the 80s and 90s good for you. Don’t attempt to get hurt now. Remember that high returns are not possible unless your money is deployed in risky ventures. That means there is a good chance that the businesses of the borrowers (from the chit fund) can be risky.

8.  Land is a slippery slope

Land is one investment that entails lot of money, lot more risks and very poor/painful redressal mechanism if you are conned. Even if you have large sums, do not get into speculative bets in land, unless you have been doing that for a living. Poor title, lack of computerized records and land grabbing all make this asset class fraught with risks. Don’t forget the farm/land schemes in the 90s that went bust with most people not getting back a penny. The settlements are still pending well after a decade.

9.    Retain property

If you bought your own property, retain it for yourself and your spouse during your life span. Let you children enjoy it after your life. Make a will that will specify who will benefit from your assets after your life span.

Even if you are in financial difficulties for running your household, consider a reverse mortgage option of your property with banks. This will provide you with some regular income stream as it’s a scheme that specifically caters to senior citizens.

10. Form a trust for a special child

If you have children with special needs or in general wish to leave a source of regular income for your family, consider forming a trust. Take the help of a lawyer or financial planner to have a trustee and ensure that your child’s need is taken care of, over the beneficiary’s (the child) life span.

In all this do not forget to live life well post retirement. If you have sufficient savings, spend on yourselves well instead of hoarding for the next generation. They would have formed their own kitty sooner or later.

(The author is Ms. Vidya Bala, Head, Mutual Fund Research, at FundsIndia.com)

RBI reduces interest rate on Senior Citizens Savings Scheme

senior_citizen_Savings_scheme

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today notified 0.1 per cent reduction each in the interest rates on Public Provident Fund (PPF) and Senior Citizen Savings Scheme (SCSS) to be effective from fiscal beginning April 1, 2013.

The rate of interest on PPF has been lowered from 8.8 per cent to 8.7 per cent with effect from April 1, 2013, the RBI said in a notification.

The rate of interest on 5 year SCSS has been reduced to 9.2 per cent from 9.3 per cent for entire 2013-14 fiscal, it said.


To read more about it click
here.

Beware of the yield claims on tax-saving products

It’s the tax-saving season and one of the popular tax-saving instruments – the five-year tax-saving bank deposit – is being promoted by banks. A major public sector bank has been prominently advertising its five-year tax-saving deposit, stating yields of 16.64 per cent pre-tax, for regular investors and 17.39 per cent for senior citizens. The rates of interest on these are 8.5 per cent and 9 per cent respectively.

The pre-tax magic

How can an 8.5-percent-a-year interest-generating deposit deliver almost twice the return? Are their claims valid?
Well, they are; only it does not give the full picture. The said advertisement bumps up your returns by considering the tax you save but totally ignores the tax that your interest income will suffer. In other words, it considers the benefit and stops there at a pre-tax stage to make the returns attractive.

Let us take an example to see how this is done: If you invest Rs 10,000 in a five-year deposit that returns 8.5 per cent a year (compounded quarterly) then you will have Rs 15,228 at the end of five years. But remember, in the first year you save taxes to the extent of Rs 3,090 (30% of Rs 10,000 plus 3% cess), if you are in the 30% tax bracket. Therefore your net cash outflow in the year of investment is taken to be Rs 6,910 (10,000-3090).

Lower returns post tax

The effective pre-tax yield is therefore about 17.1 per cent {(15,228/6910)^1/5}. But did you know that the interest of Rs 5228 suffers income tax? Interest income from deposits are treated as ‘income from other sources’ and taxed. So if you are in the 30% tax bracket, you will have a tax burden of Rs 1615, including 3% cess. Net of this, your maturity value is only Rs 13,613 (Rs 15,228-1,615). So the yield comes down to 14.5 per cent.

The return comes down if you are in the lower tax bracket of 10 per cent. Why? Because you enjoy only Rs 1,030 (10% of Rs 10,000 plus cess) as tax saved, instead of Rs 3,090. See table below to know, the actual post tax yields for those in the 10%, 20% and 30% tax bracket.

deposit yield

And remember, if you are a senior citizen, you may well be in the lower tax bracket, which means that your benefits post tax are definitely much lower than what the advertisement claims; although you may receive a slightly higher rate of interest.

Hence, you would do well to take the claims of ‘high yield’ advertisements with a pinch of salt.

The humble NSC

That said, are there any other debt options with similar maturity at this juncture that would provide tax-saving under Section 80C and also deliver good yields post tax? As seen in the table below, both regular investors and senior citizens can earn superior post tax yield if they invest in NSC. This is because, the interest on NSC, although taxable, is treated as reinvested every year under Section 80C and is therefore allowed as deduction. As a result, only the last year’s interest is actually taxed.

nsc yield

In contrast, interest on a bank tax-saving deposit is taxed entirely.

Hence, if you are a tax payer and can take a five-year lock-in, NSC’s current rate (applicable only up to March 2013) is attractive from a post tax perspective.

This article was written by Ms. Vidya Bala, a member of the financial advisory committee at Old is Gold Store.

Liquids funds – A supplement to your savings bank account

liquidfundsHave you been idling large sums in your savings bank account just to provide for any unforeseen need? If so, you could still have managed 5-6 percentage points more by setting aside at least a part of your money in liquid funds and still have liquidity.

Yes, liquid funds, offered by mutual fund houses invest in short-term money market instruments such as government securities, treasury bills and commercial paper. In a way, they park your money in instruments not too different from the way banks do and hence are reasonably secure. And yet, their returns, as the table below suggests, have been far superior to savings bank rate. Although saving bank rates have been deregulated by the RBI, only couple of banks offer 6% to 7%. The rest give you only 4% currently.

superiorreturns

Features of liquid funds

  • Invest in short-term government securities and certificate of deposits, making them reasonably secure
  • Provide flexibility to invest or withdraw any time without any exit load or penalty.
  • Some mutual fund houses even offer an ATM card to withdraw the funds
  • Tax efficient schemes
  • Have historically provided higher returns than savings bank interest rate

When to use

  • To create an emergency fund which can be withdrawn any time
  • To temporarily park any lump sum you may have received
  • To save for short-term goals such as saving for an impending vacation
  • To park money and systematically invest in other high yielding schemes such as equity funds

How to plan

Segregate the money in your savings account into two: one, the sum that you need for your day-to-day operational cash flows and the rest for contingencies or for a short-term goal. Let the first part remain in your savings account as you need this for your daily expenditure. Shift the rest to a liquid fund. If you have a time frame of over 3 months then you can consider ultra-short-term funds as well. This can give you slightly higher returns than liquid funds.

Being tax efficient

Did you know that you need to pay tax on the interest that your savings account balance fetches? Yes, such interest income is taxed at the tax slab in which you fall – 10%, 20% or 30%. Liquid funds too, are taxed (as capital gains) in the same rate if held for less than one year (indexation benefits are available for holdings greater than one year).

But you can plan to reduce the impact of capital gains tax n liquid funds. Here’s how: if you are in the high tax bracket of 30% opt for dividend payout or daily dividend reinvestment. This will reduce or nullify your capital gains. If you are in the lower tax bracket, you can instead take the growth option since the tax rate is anyway low.

Corporate houses have been using liquid funds to park their daily surpluses and derive some returns. As retail investors, you can take also benefit from these schemes.

Birla Sun Life Floating Rate Short Term Plan, Peerless Liquid and HDFC Cash Management Savings Plan are some of the liquid funds that you can consider.

This article was written by Ms. Vidya Bala, a member of the financial advisory committee at Old is Gold Store.

Income tax savings through senior citizen parents

incometaxIn an interview to CNBC-TV18, Subash Lakhotia, Tax & Investment Consultant shared his reading and outlook on tax exemption limits for senior citizens.

Talking on the subject, he says since the basic income tax exemption for a 60-year plus and 80-year plus senior citizen is Rs 2.5 lakh and Rs 5 lakh respectively, it is a good idea for the tax payer to give away money to his/her parents and then parents make investments in their own name.

Here are a few questions he has answered:

Q: Senior citizens enjoy a higher basic tax exemption limit along with a higher rate of returns on savings. Would it make sense for big family investments to be made in the senior citizens’ name? I am referring to investments which are over and above the purview of 80C?

Q: What if the heirs start fighting for it afterwards?

Q: I am a professional who owns a property which is rented out. The property is in joint name of my wife and me. It is a freehold property with no loans. Can gifting this property to my wife reduce my tax liability?

Go here to read the answers.

How safe is your capital?

Safety of capital will be on top of the financial priority list of a retired individual/senior citizen; and rightly so. With limited means of cash flows, safeguarding the capital, which would provide some income by way of interest, is important.

And yet, have the typical safe modes such as deposits offered you enough by way of return? Not so in recent years suggests this data from JP Morgan Asset Management. Across the Asian countries mentioned below, deposit rates managed to beat inflation and leave you with some surplus (returns mentioned below are deposit rates post yearly inflation) until 2007.

depositrate

Source: Asia Outlook Q1 2013 report of JP Morgan Asset Management

However, since the start of the economic slowdown in 2008, most Asian countries have seen either lower interest rates and low growth or high inflation. As a result, investors in deposits have ‘negative real returns’. For India, rising prices were higher than deposit rates by 1.9%. Simply put, the interest income from deposits has not helped you keep pace with rising cost of goods. Net result, you would have had to dig in to your capital/savings to meet it. Now in a way, that too amounts to erosion of capital does it not? That means, while you may not lose your capital through risky investments, you lose it to a lethal force called inflation.

Way out?

But what choice do you have to combat this? Not much but here are a few suggestions: Ensure that you diversify your investments across a few products. Of course, you do not have to compromise on the quantum of risk you can take. If you want only debt products, look beyond bank deposits. There would be times when top-rated bonds and debentures come up with good rates. Be on the look-out and lock into them. Keep a demat account ready for this purpose as most bonds require you to have a demat account. Explore corporate deposits in credit worthy companies that are rated. Avoid going for unrated companies unless you have knowledge on the financials of such companies.

Ensure that instruments have high credit rating such as AAA before you invest either in bonds or deposits. Look for short-term debt mutual funds that have delivered not less than 7 per cent annually in the past and have at least a three-year record. Use systematic transfer plan in these options if you wish to get a steady payout.

Even with all this, there is no guarantee that you will successfully combat inflation. The fact is that if you had a sufficiently large corpus, you can simply park your money in instruments that earn 6-7 per cent and still not worry too much about erosion in capital.

But such a corpus could have been built only if you had invested in asset classes such as equities and real estate early on in life. If you have missed the bus, advice your children to invest early, invest systematically and in inflation-beating asset classes. They can always move their money later to deposits, when their risk-taking ability diminishes.

This article has been written by Vidya Bala of our financial advisory team.  Write to advice@oldisgoldstore.com if you would like us to answer any of your questions or address a specific topic..

Investments that secure you monthly income

retirement_investmentPost retirement, the need for a regular income stream becomes vital. Even if you are a pensioner, it is likely that you need to supplement it with some regular cash flow to meet your expenses. That is why it becomes imperative for you to build a portfolio of investments that generate income either monthly or quarterly. Here are a few options, with varying degrees of risk, available to you.

Post office schemes

The top choices in terms of capital safety as well as regular income are the post office senior citizen savings scheme and post office monthly income account scheme. Currently the post office senior citizen scheme (five-year tenure) offers 9.3 per cent per annum, with interests paid out every quarter. This is higher than the interest rate of 9 per cent offered by a good number of banks.

What more, the principal investment is available for deduction under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, up to Rs 1 lakh. Hence, besides attractive interest rates, the scheme is also suitable for those who are in the middle or higher tax bracket and need to reduce their tax outgo. You can invest up to Rs 15 lakh under this scheme.

The post office monthly income scheme has a less attractive 8.5 per cent per annum. Its key advantage is the monthly pay out. While you can opt for this if you are averse to non-government schemes, it may be a better option to go for senior citizen scheme first. The interest from the senior citizen scheme will be credited the post office savings account. Hence, you can also withdraw money as and when you wish to, after the quarter’s interest is credited.

Interest though is taxable under both the schemes. Tax is deducted at source if interest exceeds Rs 10,000 per annum. Ensure that you submit Form 15H if your annual income is well below the minimum tax slab.

Banks and financial institutions

Many banks and financial institutions offer monthly interest payout. But the interest rate mentioned as the annual rate will be accordingly discounted. For example, if you had an interest payout of say 9.35 per cent a year for quarterly payouts, the monthly interest rate applicable could be say 9.3 per cent a year.

Currently, Karnataka Bank, IDBI Bank, Yes Bank, to name a few, offer interest rates higher than the Post Office Senior Citizen Scheme. But if you avail the 80C tax deduction benefit available in post office senior citizen scheme, then your yield would be higher than the rates offered by banks. Do note that interest income is taxable in these cases too.

Bank deposits are relatively safe as your deposits (plus your savings account balance) are insured up to Rs 1 lakh in each branch of a bank.

Among finance institutions, you should be careful about the credit worthiness of the company. Therefore, always check for their credit rating and go for those with highest credit rating of AAA. HDFC’s Platinum deposit, for instance, offers 9.3 per cent annual rate for monthly interest payout option and 9.35 per cent for quarterly payout options. It has AAA-rating.

If you are not confident about investing in private institutions, then look for government-backed ones. Currently, National Housing Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of RBI offers 9.85 per cent a year across various maturity periods. But the interest payout is only on a half-yearly basis.

Savvier options

If you have limited- or no-source of regular income, you will do well to allocate a chunk of your savings in safe options. But if you have other sources of cash flow like pension or rental income, then a fifth or less can be parked in savvier options like debt mutual funds. We are not suggesting the universe of equity funds for reasons of high risk.

Mutual fund investors may be aware of Monthly Income Plans or MIPs that seek to offer a monthly/quarterly/half-yearly dividend payout to investors. These funds predominantly invest in short and long term fixed income instruments issued by government or corporate, in debentures and in commercial paper. MIPs however, have a 15-20 per cent exposure to equities to provide some kicker to returns.

The flip side here is that while most schemes strive to declare dividends every month, there is no guaranteed payout. The quantum can also vary based on the gains made in various interest rate cycles. Also, debt funds suffer a 13.5 per cent (including cess and surcharge) dividend distribution tax DDT). Although paid by the fund, this is adjusted in the NAV.

If you wish to avoid the uncertainty in dividend payment and the NAV erosion from DDT, then systematic withdrawal plan (SWP) is a good option. You can invest a lump sum in a short-to-medium-term debt fund or MIP. Avoid the dividend option in this case. Allow the lump sum to grow for at least 1-3 years. This will also help avoid short-term capital gains tax (mf investments less than one year suffer short-term gains taxed at your income tax slab rate) and exit load.

Opt for SWP which will allow you to withdraw a fixed amount systematically, on a monthly, quarterly or half-yearly basis. But you will suffer long-term capital gains at the time of withdrawal. That will be 10 per cent on the gains without indexation or 20 per cent with indexation. Hence, if you are among those in the high tax bracket, this would be a superior option to the traditional fixed income options.

As far as possible, have a judicious mix of the above options in line with your risk appetite.

Happy investing and have a safe 2013!

Note: Products recommended in this article are general suggestions. Investors would have to keep in mind their specific requirements and risk appetite before choosing their investments.

Author: Vidya Bala, Head, Mutual Fund Research, FundsIndia