Saturday, July 31, 2010

An SIP or One-Time Investment?

If I continuously invest Rs 5,000 per month in an equity fund, is it possible to build a corpus over 15 years? Would I not make much more by investing it all at one go and holding on for that long? Would I need to change funds to keep the growth going?
Regarding the possibility of building a corpus over 15 years, it certainly is plausible. Even if you invest just Rs 5,000/month and earn an annual return of 12 per cent, you would end up with Rs 25.20 lakh at the end of 15 years.
Alright, that's theoretical. So let's look at some actual funds to see if this thesis holds up. I have taken a 15-year time frame and looked at a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) of Rs 5,000/month over this entire period. The diverse line up includes some superstars as well as dogs. That's deliberate. It will convey a more realistic picture. As you can see, there is no arguing with the numbers. And even though the worst performing fund made money, the difference between the best and the worst is nothing short of glaring.
Your second question is interesting, and you may even be right, but look at the table below for a reality check. If you are looking at a one-time investment, you would first of all need to be in possession of capital, in this case Rs 9 lakh, that too 15 years ago. Once you overcome this hurdle, you would end up being a hostage to market timing. What if you had invested the money at the peak of the market cycle, say January 2008 when the Sensex was at around 21,000. Can you imagine the worth of your investment by December 2008 when the Sensex dipped to an abysmally low 8,500? Psychologically, the impact of seeing your investment reduce to half can be disastrous. The good thing about a systematic investment plan (SIP) is that it helps you ride the market upheavals to your advantage. And it does what you want, which is accumulate wealth over the years in a low-cost, transparent fashion without a strain on your finances.
Schemes   Return per annum over 15 years (%)   Value of investment (Rs)   Value of lumpsum investment(Rs)
Taurus Discovery 10.80 21,31,190 15,03,771
LIC MF Equity 11.09 21,83,562 19,84,711
JM Equity 12.58 24,78,042 32,22,665
UTI Equity 17.29 37,15,251 49,27,771
Morgan Stanley Growth 18.41 40,95,826 84,63,828
Tata Growth 19.83 46,37,703 49,53,895
Magnum Multiplier Plus 21.03 51,56,455 75,85,140
Franklin India Bluechip 27.95 94,87,199 223,45,626
HDFC Equity 30.63 120,17,370 247,71,497
Monthly SIP = Rs 5,000 for 15 years and Principal Amount Invested over 15 years = Rs 9 lakh
Returns as on May 31, 2010

Posted By: S Rahul


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