Markets

‘Trade within limits, buy for the long term’

V.Sajeev Kumar Kochi | Updated on June 11, 2018

V GEORGE ANTONY, Former MD, UAE Exchange (India)

 

After serving a commendable long stint in remittance and forex business, V George Antony, former managing director of UAE Exchange (India), has now shifted his focus to the stock broking business of the group, as Head of UAE Exchange & Finance. According to him, the stock market exposure of the middle-class segment in India is still untapped and therefore, holds immense market potential. He shares with BusinessLine his initiatives to encourage a share trading culture among retail investors for fetching better returns and other market-related happenings. Excerpts:

Given the current volatility in the market, what is your advice to traders?

Trade within your means and buy for the long term. Do not get carried away by the tempting offers available in the market, like multiple times exposure or tips which float through SMS, WhatsApp or e-mail. Buy fundamentally strong shares of well-managed companies and hold on to them till you get the desired profits. The market will go up and down, but hold on to your shares.

Do not panic and sell when you see the market going down or when you see loss in your portfolio. Normally good shares are thrown up at the time of quarterly/ annual results, even if the markets go down.

Crude oil price changes, currency fluctuations, changes in monetary policy, and GDP fluctuations could see the market oscillate. Major political announcements or global events also bring changes in the market behaviour. The market may eye the 2019 general elections for a clear direction.

Who are your customers? Are you targeting NRIs, especially in Kerala?

We have domestic as well as NRI customers trading on our platform. We give equal focus to all customers, big and small, and do not segregate them based on volume of business. Recently, we have started a research division by appointing experienced persons to give better personalised service to customers. We are also in the process of starting advisory services shortly.

Does your company offer any cost advantage given the challenge of discount broking?

We give best rates to our customers and should be one of the best in the industry today. We try to excel in whatever we offer and give more importance to personalised service. To new customers, we offer free account opening, and free daily brokerage up to a certain amount, so that they learn to buy and sell shares free of cost and gradually come to the mainstream of the securities market.

Since last year you have started offering NSE and BSE F&O to your customers. What is the current situation?

UAE Exchange & Finance is in the stock trading business since 1998, and it has a good customer base. We had taken BSE and NSE F&O to give better offerings to existing customers and for new customers. Now we are able to offer all trading products under one umbrella.

Do you have any expansion plans in stock broking?

Yes, we will be expanding aggressively and are appointing relationship managers in major cities. In addition, we will be focussing on promoting the online platform for trading and supporting customers offline. Customers can open a trading account digitally, sign digitally using Aadhaar, trade over their mobiles or desktops via the mobile app ‘Xtrade’ or through www.uaeexchange-xtrade.com.

Trading has become so simple and user-friendly now that anybody can become an expert at it by putting in a little bit of effort. They can trade on the move now with just a few clicks.

On the changes in regulatory policy...

The recent policy change by the regulator allowing domestic customers to open trading/demat account using Aadhaar e-KYC digitally is a welcome move; it has wiped out geographical barriers for account opening.

NRI customers should be allowed to trade by mapping their NRI accounts. Currently, they have to open a separate PIS account if they wish to do trading in India. Today, where technology is so much integrated and fund trail tracking is so easy, this additional control may be relaxed by the regulators.

Customers can be given flexibility to trade by mapping their NRI accounts. This will result in a lot of convenience and less cost to NRI customers who wish to buy and sell shares, and in turn, increase retail market volumes.

Do you think shifting focus on MFs and SIP investments will hinder customers from taking independent decisions on their investment plans?

Today, customers — big and small — are investing through mutual funds and SIPs. Customers who does not have time to trade by themselves, or those who do not want to take risk or those who had been saving money in monthly savings deposit schemes or investing in chit funds are opting for mutual funds/SIPs. It is also ideal to have a portion of the savings invested through SIPs.

In my view, some portion of these mutual fund customers slowly migrate in their second stage to direct trading, seeing the income opportunity and become big traders.

Published on June 11, 2018

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