(Last Updated: April 9, 2019)
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How to Invest in Direct Mutual Funds?

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  • Hi, I think it offers direct fund platform. You can invest in some funds that it supports. Through Karvy app you can transact and manage AMC schemes serviced by Karvy. You can check their site for additional information.

  • Hi,
    I found mycamsonline quite useful for investing in Regular or Direct mutual funds.
    I could see 14 AMC's listed there.
    Here you can do everything related to investment in Mutual Funds and SIP in listed AMC's.
    Mycamsonline is quite a simple way to manage most of your mutual fund investments.

  • @prateek No Doubt that CAMS is a great tool. Just that its UI is not that modern but mycams app is good enough though. You can buy both direct and regular funds but who wants regular funds these days anyways .. 🙂

  • Sure you have a point.
    Everybody who understands difference between regular and direct mutual funds wants direct only.
    But, there are few friends of mine not knowing the difference, who fell to trap of a brokers who intentionally made them enter ARN while registering mutual funds online.

  • @prateek Well the brokers need to adapt and slowly the regular mutual funds will go away. Anyways have you tried Zerodha coin or unovest for investing in direct mutual funds ?

    I heard that unovest is run by Nikhil Khandelwal who himself is an RIA. Have you tried any of them ?

  • A lot of direct mutual fund platforms are popping up clearfunds, groww, upwardly, unovest, kuvera, BharosaClub, moneyfront, orowealth, wealthpedia, jama to name a few. These are supposed to provide a better interface, usability and customer support as compared to Govt instis/RTAs

    There are Govt institutes or other approved bodies(KRAs/MF own investing platform) as well that let you invest in direct funds like MFUtility, CAMS, Karvy. The choice of mutual funds in CAMS/karvy is restricted to mutual funds that these people serve(CAMS seem to let you invest in the karvy funds as well though).

    MFs own investing platforms are restricted to their own funds. e.g on SBI transaction platform you can invest only in SBI funds.

    Then there are bigger brokers like Zerodha Coin coming as well to fray.

    So you have quite a few choices in how to invest in direct mutual funds. I personally doubt the business model of direct fund only platforms so I personally invest with zerodha coin as they seem to have a better business model and business can stay long. Please note that if the business closes, you will need to shift your funds to the other platform which can be cumbersome.

    Just my thoughts, please do your own research before investing.

  • @jatinderchd

    I personally doubt the business model of direct fund only platforms

    This is the reason I rely more on mycams as other platforms somewhere have to sell something so that their business goes on.

    Nice analysis and information.

  • @prateek I wonder if you have tried any of the modern platforms like Orowealth, Zerodha coin etc.

    Also, does mycams support all the funds ? The funds by Karvy, Franklin and Sundaram as well because the RTA of those funds is not CAMS ?

  • MFU/Cams/AMC would allow you to invest through their platform, but the difficulty is how to track. Secondly, the direct plans are cost effective and can be a best suitable for investors who are savvy. If they need an ongoing advice on their investments, it is always better to hire a SEBI Registered Investment Advisor who would work on behalf of the clients.

  • Yes, I have also heard that direct plans are better. It saves some cost. Is this actually true? Does investing in direct plan seem to be a good idea for a newbie investor? Is it easy for a new investor to follow DIY approach for investing or should I take the help of a financial advisor to guide me? Please suggest.

  • The direct plan has got advantage in terms of expense ratio. It is advisable to take the help of advisor so that the investor can take very well informed investment decision especially for the newbie investor.

  • Well Tracking is not an issue. there are several apps to do that. Money Control, ET etc are some of them. you can also track if you use some online RIA like zerodha coin, Groww etc... there are many apps for that.

    For regular rebalancing though, one may require the services of an offline RIA(if they can work with individuals on their needs and goals and can give individual attention) since online portals seem to be a one size fits all solution.

  • @jatinderchd Well Said. However, if an RIA like Wealth Ladder Direct has both tracking/investment platform coupled with advise could help the investor having everything at one place.

  • Overall RIAs seem to be very excited by the prospect of direct funds and try to sell the user that their funds are being invested in direct and some other people are investing their money in regular. However whether the indian customer takes this proposition well enough is a point to ponder. Here are the various things to consider:

    India is a very price sensitive society. Indian customer doesn't like to pay for financial advice. Moreover Its very difficult and time consuming to have the first time Indian customer to invest in the stock markets. Couple that with the charges of financial advice, it will sway the customer away from investment.

    The customer who has been in the market for couple of years thinks that he knows everything and doesn't need an advisor for the portfolio. In any case, the the customer doesn't want to pay anything.

    Most of the online platforms now offer direct funds. I am not sure about the viability of one over the another. Ultimately the fees to invest in direct funds will be fall to zero and people will be able to invest free like they can in MF utility.

    With the above constraints in place and no-one having incentive to sell the Direct MF, it will go just go the way like in the west. The MF funds are history here and people just invest in ETFs.

  • @ftForumMod The Advisory roles are still required even though the clients are well knowledgeable in terms of investments. Only the difference is that the RIA's like Wealth Ladder Direct is going to provide the knowledge transition and charge a client instead of just getting paid by the AMC's. This makes lot more difference to the clients as well. However, this works only with HNI clients and may not work for retail investors.

  • I have been using Zerodha Coin to invest in direct mutual funds. I have used MFUtility in the past but zerodha coin's UI is next to none. Paying 50 odd rupees per month that zerodha coin charges is worth the feature set that they deliver for that amount.

  • To compete with kuvera and others, zerodha has gone away with charges on coin.
    Now coin is completely free.
    (As the mail I got, devil is in details or not, I have to check)

  • Zerodha is gone away with Rs50 a month fee now.
    Now they no more charge any thing for direct investments to mutual funds.

  • @prateek Yes, I too have heard that Zerodha coin has done away with the fee of Rs.50 they used to charge earlier for direct investments above certain limit. It's completely free now! A tough competition for other direct fund platforms now. They are leaving no stone unturned to grow bigger and attract more investors.

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