Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Public offers & retail participation

- Chellamuthu Kuppusamy

Not really sure if many are following the market and hoping for a recovery or repeat of what we saw in 2003-2007. Beginning of bull runs are normally marked with underpriced public offers by the government. Maruti IPO in 2003 was a classical example that heralded a magical bull run.

If that is anything to go by, lukewarm response for the public offer of two state owned companies is paining. Retail portion for NTPC follow-on offer was subscribed 0.16 times and REC 0.22 times.

This is quite a contrast against the overwhelming response for NTPC’s IPO at Rs 62 back in 2004. If we go by the school of thought that low prices quality IPO are the indication of market revival we have miles to travel. Market, on the other hand, keeps everyone guessing.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

CFP - Perhaps a must for Financial Professionals !!

- Chellamuthu Kuppusamy

Financial Planning and investment service is one that needs a lot of professionalism, ethics and financial literacy. Ability to make potential client understand their financial needs, both short team and long term, and suggest – not sell - various options available in front of them is one of the most important traits an investment consultant should not only possess but also exhibit.

Most of the self-styled ‘financial advisors’ are merely agents. They are rarely equipped to offer advice and confront the queries. Thanks to IRDA’s initiatives in the recent past that anyone aspiring to become an insurance agent (both life & general) should sit for an exam and obtain license. To some extent this has helped the agent community at large obtain insurance literacy. Trust me, I know an agent for 19 years and he is yet to process/sell a term insurance plan.

Well, going forward, professionalism and knowledge would be key for the survival of not only insurance agent, but for anyone in the field of financial service. CFP is one such a step in that director. Certified Financial Planner is offered by Financial Planning Standard Board (FPSB) of India. One can attend the course from any of the Authorized Educational Providers and appear in the examination conducted by NSE IT.

Financial market is like an ocean that employs millions of people. Currently there are only 920 CFPs in India as per FPSB website. This number is expected to surge in the years to come as it offers high level of professionalism, job & business opportunities and international recognition.

Who knows, it might even become a statutory requirement . . .