There is a huge potential with Indian markets and “we have to look inwards” as the number of investors investing in equity in India is very low, according to Sunitha Anand, Lead-SBU Education and Head Administration (South), National Stock Exchange of India Ltd, Chennai.
She said NSE has signed MoUs with Governments of Tamil Nadu and Kerala to run programmes on financial literacy for students.
During her interaction with the media after inaugurating the trading lab at the PSG Institute of Management (PSGIM) here today, she said the number of people investing in the equity markets is a fraction of the investing public.
She said, “definitely we have to grow it and increase our base” and it should be “driven internally than by external forces”.
Asked whether the Inter-connected Stock Exchange of India (ISE), reported to be planning to go pan-India by offering a national level trading platform, will be able to generate volume since three exchanges were already operating, Sunitha Anand remarked “I would say there is huge potential with Indian markets”. The number of investors was a paltry 5-6 per cent of the investing population.
She felt “there was place for everybody” and we should get more participation that is “more meaningful, empowered and they know the risks of such investments”.
On the employment potential of the NSE Certified Capital Market Professional course at a time when many brokerages were downsizing staff strength due to sluggish business, she said this happened because brokerages were opting for merger/restructuring. But the market has not shrunk but was “up and going”.
These students have job potential not directly with brokerages but as investment bankers, research analysts, business strategists etc. There was so much requirement for skilled force from the student community and asserted “there is no dearth for employability”. With global investors coming in, the market would get bigger.
Asked about the fewer number of shares being actively traded in the markets, she said “the market intermediaries decide what to trade, what not to trade” and as an exchange NSE provided the requisite infrastructure and ensured that the compliance rules were met.
Earlier inaugurating the trading lab at PSGIM, Sunitha Anand urged the students of the PSG Group of institutions to make “career choices in finance” rather than look for conventional options. She said globalisation had impacted the Indian markets too and a career in finance would open up opportunities for them to become leaders in their chosen field.
Global investment destination
She said Indian markets today could compete, if not be leaders, with global counterparts and India could become global investment destination if more and more students succeeded in their career in financial sector. She said the financial sector required half a million skilled and semi skilled workforce but the number that is being offered to the market is much less.
The FIIs played a dominant role in the Indian markets and this should be counter-balanced by the Domestic Institutional Investors (DIIs) which “is definitely a big challenge”. But as the Finance Minister had stated last week that pension funds would begin investing in capital markets, their entry would counterbalance the FII activity that would ensure a “much deeper, wider and stable market”.
Sunitha Anand said as part of efforts to enhance awareness among the school and college students, NSE has signed MoUs with Governments of Tamil Nadu and Kerala for financial literacy among the students. In Tamil Nadu, the programme covered students from Std VIII to make them aware at a preliminary level of various financial tools available before introducing students to secondary markets and investment destinations. Nearly 7.5 lakh students benefited and about 2,000 faculty members from government and aided schools have been trained. The idea was to train the students manage their finances prudently.
Taking the cue from Tamil Nadu, the Kerala Government had also sought NSE’s assistance and the exchange has launched a programme for students in XI standard and at the UG level in that state.
R. Nandagopal, Director, PSGIM, said the trading lab, sponsored by AICTE, would provide the students with real time trading experience for which NSE has extended technical support.
L.Gopalakrishnan, Managing Trustee, PSG Institutions, was present.