Lack of awareness keeping women away from equities

Lack of awareness keeping women away from equities
Highlights

Priti Rathi Gupta, an alumnus of Harvard Business School, is a known personality in Indias financial sector She promoted Anand Rathi Share and Stock Brokers Ltd, for which she is Managing Director now Recently, she launched LXME, a financial planning app for women Through this app, she wants to help women make sound financial decisions on their own Speaking with The Hans India, Priti Rathi Gu

Hyderabad: Priti Rathi Gupta, an alumnus of Harvard Business School, is a known personality in India’s financial sector. She promoted Anand Rathi Share and Stock Brokers Ltd, for which she is Managing Director now. Recently, she launched LXME, a financial planning app for women. Through this app, she wants to help women make sound financial decisions on their own. Speaking with The Hans India, Priti Rathi Gupta divulges the dire need for such platform in the country.

What according to you is the best instrument to save money?
Long time periods balance the risk in equity investment while debt instruments do better for short term goals. Modern instruments like mutual funds do offer debt schemes which are low risk with a better return, but being market driven, may still come across as not very safe as compared to the traditional instruments like FD, PPF, gold, etc. So, a good portfolio should have a mix of both traditional and modern which can effectively save tax apart from creating wealth for future and emergency funds.

What is LXME?
Founded in 2018, LXME is a women-centric financial planning platform, which equips them with the knowledge and tools to better understand their money and make the right financial moves. The online investing platform offers goal-based and tailored MF portfolios backed by Anand Rathi’s experience. Also, there are online learning modules and on-ground workshops conducted for women to understand all about investments.

What was the reason behind coming out with this platform?
LXME has been my brainchild since I was a student of Harvard Business School a few years back. I want LXME to be a starting point for women to begin their financial planning journey; and an access point for women of all strata. When will this be achieved cannot be determined conclusively…it involves changing how women perceive matters of financial planning.

What were the major areas of financial difficulty that women put forward at the bootcamp?
We saw women with a drive to grow their money and be financially secure. However, the lack of awareness about the various financial products and more importantly finding the relevant investment avenues for them in the cluttered market had kept them from making the right financial decisions. There was also an opinion of only traditional instruments being ‘safe’ for investments which changed through the course of the workshop as they were exposed to the reality of markets though interactive activities.

How much of one’s salary should be saved and where?
A minimum of 20 per cent of one’s salary should be invested for future growth. Also, as a rule of thumb, you must build an emergency fund of six months of your salary. This should be more liquid and thus should be invested in instruments without any lock-in. An investment portfolio should always be diversified with a mix of traditional and modern investment instruments basis your financial goals.

What needs to be done, so that more women can be the next Priti Rathi Gupta?
The earlier one invests…the richer one can get. During my college days, I used to look at my family investments and that experience made me curious about investing in equity markets. The key to investing is -you don’t need a large sum of money, you can start with as little as Rs 500. Women should start investing with their first salary cheque.

Your aim should be to live the current lifestyle through investments. If you plan to open a business, you need financial backup. Go beyond PPF, FDs, etc. Do not follow the myths such as stock markets are risky and handled by men only.

What kind of results you are expecting from the platform in the first year of its launch?
The idea is to spark a thought among women who are keen on taking the first step toward financial freedom. Through curated financial education, a tailored investment platform and a trusted community, we want women across life stages to evolve with LXME and be smart investors and money managers. So, our main aim is to make women smart investors.

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