Mutual funds invest in market linked securities and thus the investments are volatile. Many new investors start investing in lump sum when there is optimistic mood all around them and stop their investments when there is pessimism (when the market corrects) around them. While trying to enter and exit the market, they tend to forget that mutual fund investments are subject to market risks and that they are long term investments. Therefore, it is natural that there would be ups and downs during the investment period. But being new investors, they might not know how this.

The question is how this new investors should invest in mutual funds? The answer lies in doing SIP. Let us examine why SIP can be a great way of investing in mutual funds for new investors.

SIP makes you disciplined

Everyone talks about maximising profits as the main reason for adopting the SIP strategy for investing in mutual funds. But the most important feature of SIP investing is imparting financial discipline in the lives of all investors particularly the new ones. 

SIP forces investors to invest a fixed sum of money on a fixed interval regularly irrespective of the market levels. By submitting an ECS mandate for SIP, the SIP amount gets automatically debited from your bank account on a particular day of the month as specified by you and gets invested in the mutual fund scheme of your choice. SIPs put your investment in auto-pilot mode and the long term benefits are immense. Since the money is directly debited from your bank account, the chances of you missing your investment are very remote. It also stops you from influencing your investment decision when the markets come down or go up.

You can even setup the SIP date right after your salary date just to ensure that you do not spend this money on anything else.

Through disciplined SIP investing you can create large corpuses by investing a small amount over a long period of time. This helps you in meeting your long term goals. For example – by investing Rs 5,700 per month through SIP, you can create a corpus of Rs 2 Crore for your retirement.

Rupee cost averaging   

The other big advantage of SIP is that, it makes market timing irrelevant. It is not possible to predict accurately how markets will behave during you investment tenure. By investing through SIP at a regular frequency, e.g. monthly, one is invested both at the high and the low points of the market. SIP works well in volatile markets by averaging the cost of the investment.

Let us see how rupee cost averaging works through the chart below –

SIP date SIP amount NAV (Rs) No. of units
(SIP amount / NAV)
1st  Jan’17 5000 12.00 416.67
1st  Feb’17 5000 11.50 434.78
1st  Mar’17 5000 11.75 425.53
1st  Apr’17 5000 12.15 411.52
1st  May’17 5000 12.40 403.23
1st  Jun’17 5000 13.00 384.62
1st  Jul’17 5000 12.10 413.22
1st  Aug’17 5000 12.30 406.50
1st  Sep’17 5000 11.90 420.17
1st  Oct’17 5000 11.70 427.35
1st  Nov’17 5000 12.20 409.84
1st  Dec’17 5000 12.90 387.60
Total Rs 60,000 4941.02
Average cost price      
(Total investment / Total number of units) Rs. 12.14

As you can see in the above chart, the average cost per unit over 12 months of SIP investment is Rs 12.14 only compared to the highest unit price of Rs 13.00 and lowest Rs 11.70.

SIP helps in meeting your long term financial goals

One of the biggest challenges for achieving long term goals is that we have limited time to save for long term goals like retirement, children education and their marriage etc. Even if we start retirement planning at the age of 35, we have just 20 – 25 years to save sufficient money for meeting the interim goals as well as to build a corpus that will last 25 to 30 years of our retired lives.

With average inflation of over 6% in India, it is very important how we allocate our savings and into which asset class. Let us see how regular investing through SIP in equity mutual funds can help!

Returns Monthly investment required for retirement goal of Rs 2 Crores
10 years 15 years 20 years 25 years 30 years
Fixed Deposits @ 8% 1,08,598 57,414 33,730 20,891 13,331
Mutual Funds @ 12% 86,081 39,637 20,017 10,539 5,666

As you can see in the above chart, you can achieve your retirement goal of Rs 2 Crores after 25 years by investing only Rs 10,539 per month through SIP in equity mutual funds (assuming 12% return) while to achieve the same goal by saving regularly in fixed deposits, you need to save almost the double amount, i.e. Rs 20,891 per month.

Therefore, mutual fund SIP could undoubtedly be one of the best ways of investing for your long term goals as you benefit by the immense power of compounding over a long horizon.

Therefore, SIP is a great tool for new investors as it makes them disciplined, while benefiting from rupee cost averaging and also helps meet long term financial goals by investing small amount through SIP in mutual funds.

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