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Before you actually start investing and trading, it would be advisable to understand a few basic concepts related to business and finance. Presented in the simplest terms, these would give you an insights that can improve your investing decisions...

A few things you must know
"Become an Investing Pro with 6 easy lessons".Get started
Investing Basics
Financial planning
Investment risk management
Why Equities are a Must
Equity Basics
Getting started

1. What are Markets?
A stock market is a market for the trading of company stock/ shares, and derivatives. This includes securities listed on a stock exchange as well as those only traded privately. Market is a place where buyers and sellers of securities can enter into transactions to purchase and sell shares, bonds, debentures etc.
  • 1.1 Primary markets:
    The primary market is that part of the capital markets that deals with the issuance of new securities.
  • 1.2 Secondary markets:
    The secondary market is the financial market for trading of securities that have already been issued in an initial private or public offering. In the secondary market, securities are sold by and transferred from one investor or speculator to another.

2. What are shares?
A share is one of a finite number of equal portions in the capital of a company, entitling the owner to a proportion of distributed, non-reinvested profits known as dividends and to a portion of the value of the company in case of liquidation. Equity is a share in the ownership of a company. It represents a claim on the company’s assets and earnings. As you acquire more stock, your ownership stake in the company increases. The terms share, equity and stock mean the same thing and can be used interchangeably.

3. What is a stock exchange?
A stock exchange, share market or bourse is a corporation or mutual organization which provides facilities for stock brokers and traders, to trade company stocks and other securities.

The Bombay Stock Exchange Limited, or BSE has a nation-wide reach with a presence in 417 cities and towns of India. Its index, or market indicator is known as the Sensex.

The S&P CNX Nifty, or simply Nifty, is the leading index for large companies on the National Stock Exchange of India. It consists of 50 companies representing 24 sectors of the economy, and representing approximately 47% of the traded value of all stocks on the National Stock Exchange of India (more...)

4. Who is a broker?
A stockbroker is person who is licensed to trade in shares. Brokers also have direct access to the sharemarket and can act as your agent in share transactions. For this service they charge a fee. They can also offer additional services like advice on shares, debentures, government bonds and listed property trusts and non-listed investment options (cash management trusts, property and equity trusts. (more...)

5. What is a Demat A/c?
Investors who wish to trade in the market need to have a dematerialized, or demat, account. In India, the government has mandated two entities –National Securities Depository, or NSDL, and Central Depository Services (India), or CDSL – to be the custodian of dematerialized securities. (more...)

6. Buying and selling of dematerialised securities
What is the procedure for selling dematerialized securities?
The procedure for selling dematerialized securities is very simple. After you have sold the securities, you would instruct your DP to debit your account with the number of securities sold by you and credit your broker's clearing account. This delivery instruction has to be given to your DP using the delivery instruction slips given to you by your DP at the time of opening the account. (more...)

How can I purchase dematerialized securities?
For receiving demat securities you may give a one-time standing instruction to your DP. This standing instruction can be given at the time of account opening or later. Alternatively, you may choose to give separate receipt instruction every time some securities are to be received. (more...)

7. How to receive income from shares?
We invest in shares to make money – either through a share’s capital growth, i.e. the amount by which the share price increases in value over time, or through the dividends it pays to its shareholders. Dividends are payments made by companies to shareholders from their profits. (more...)

8. How much should you invest?
Asset allocator and other tools…

9. How to make investment decisions?
The stock market has, perhaps, the most exciting investment opportunities for the investor community. At the same time, it could be unnerving and scary. In fact, equity investment has always remained a big challenge, not only for retail but institutional investors, too.

In short, investing in equities can be a difficult proposition for retail investors. However, equity must form a part of every investor’s portfolio. The proportion could vary, depending on the investor’s age, monetary requirements, risk appetite, etc.

To cope with volatility, it is important to have a disciplined and systematic approach to equity investment. Set your own rules and more importantly, follow them religiously. Indeed, the mantra for successful equity investment is a well thought-out, disciplined investment strategy.

A long-term monetary commitment, adherence to discipline in investment and decisions based on company fundamentals are essential ingredients for successful equity investment. (more...)

10. How to track your investments? (Portfolio tracker)
Portfolio tracker

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