Single Demat account with access to details of your investments in shares, mutual funds, fixed deposits, insurance policies, Public Provident Fund, Post Office Savings Schemes et., may soon be a reality.
Record keeping is one of the biggest challenges for the investors, financial institutions and intermediaries like agents or advisors. There is no common platform wherein you can access all the details of your investments.
Ex Finance Minister, P Chidambaram had announced about single demat account for all the financial investments in the interim budget. Since then much work has been done on this project. To start with investors will have access to details of their investments in bank fixed deposits, mutual funds and insurance products. The next phase of the project would cover other financial investment products like Public Provident Fund and Post Office Savings schemes.
A sub-committee of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) headed by the Reserve Bank of India governor has been working on this initiative. Depositories have already started putting in place the required infrastructure for this.
How it will benefit Investors:
- Record keeping will be easy. All the investment details will be available online in single demat account.
- It will also do away with multiple KYC (Know Your Customer) requirements for each investment.
- In case of Change of details like address, name etc., the investor could inform it to the depository which accordingly will be reflected in all the investments. Updating with multiple financial entities will not be required.
- Tracking of financial history will be easy. This will be very useful for Tax Planning and Filing.
- The investor can have better data control and can easily do portfolio analysis of his/her investments.
- If you want to take a loan, you can present the lender all the collateral that you can offer in one single statement.
The financial institutions will also benefit from this initiative. The cost of creating documents will come down.
Each financial product may have different set of required KYC documents, different nomination procedures etc., Standardization of documents, procedures and integration of systems is the need of the hour. Hence all the financial institutions and regulators have to work together to make this initiative a game changer. Let us hope this option is available soon.