Which is the best investment plan: stocks vs PPF vs mutual funds is a common question among investors. Each has its own set of benefits, drawbacks, features, maturity period, tax benefits, and so on. Because stocks, PPFs, and mutual funds are so popular and the best investment plans, it is critical to understand the differences between the two before investing.
We will look at the differences between stocks, PPFs, and mutual funds, as well as the benefits and where to invest, in this blog.
Understanding Stocks, Pension Plans, and Mutual Funds
Stocks are far riskier than equity mutual funds. The diversified equity mutual fund diversifies your investment across sectors and industries, reducing volatility. Before investing your money, you must conduct extensive research to select the best investment plan.
PPF is a risk-free debt vehicle, whereas mutual funds are market-linked and thus subject to market risk. The Public Provident Fund (PPF) is a government-managed, government-guaranteed best investment plan that encourages citizens to save.
In the case of equity mutual funds, experts conduct the research, and your investment is managed by a professional fund manager. This service is not free and is subject to annual management fees levied by the mutual fund house.
Read: How To Find The Best Low Duration Fund
How Do You Select the Best Investment Plan for Yourself?
If you are a new investor with little or no experience in the stock markets, it is best to begin your equity investments through mutual funds because not only is the risk comparatively lower, but your investment is also managed by a fund manager. You can also choose from various types of equity funds to achieve your financial goals based on your risk tolerance.
1. Capital Gains
If you invest in stocks, you will not receive any tax benefits. However, you can claim a tax deduction of up to Rs 1.5 lakh per year under Section 80C if you invest in tax-saving mutual funds known as equity-linked saving schemes or ELSS. ELSS can provide you with both an inflation-beating return and tax savings. Mutual funds are taxed differently depending on the type of plan and the length of time held.
Under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act of 1961, PPF investments are tax-free up to Rs 1,50,000 per fiscal year. PPF interest is tax-free as well, though it must be reported on the annual income tax return. When the PPF corpus matures, it is tax-free. In other words, PPF has a unique tax treatment as an investment tool: ‘exempt, exempt, exempt.’
2. Investing Categories
Stocks are thought to be a long-term investment. When you buy stocks, you are purchasing a portion of a company that will be more valuable in the future. The value of your stocks will fluctuate over time, but if you hold them for a long enough period of time, they will usually increase in value.
AMCs create a variety of mutual fund schemes with varying portfolio mixes based on the risk profile of the client. The corpus invests in financial instruments to generate returns and meet the participants’ investment objectives.
PPF is a popular savings option provided by the Indian government with the goal of accumulating funds to build a corpus while earning a reasonable rate of return and gaining tax advantages.
3. Availability of liquidity
Recently, there has been an increase in stock liquidity as more people buy and sell shares. This is good news for the economy because it indicates that the stock market is confident. Liquidity is important because it allows investors to quickly and easily buy and sell shares without having to wait for a buyer or seller.
Mutual funds have a lot of liquidity. Even for a single day, one can remain invested. If you redeem mutual fund units within a certain time frame, the mutual fund house will charge you an exit load.
Closed-ended funds with a term of 3-4 years can only be redeemed when the term expires.
PPFs are long-term investment vehicles with low liquidity requirements.
By the end of the third year, the subscriber will be able to borrow 25% of the remaining amount.
Withdrawal after the seventh year is only permitted in exceptional circumstances. In this comparison, mutual funds are more liquid than PPF deposits, which must be held for 15 years.
4. Risk Factor
Stock risk is affected by a variety of factors, including the company’s financial stability, overall market conditions, and the individual investor’s risk tolerance. While it is impossible to eliminate all risks, investors can make more informed decisions about when and how to invest in the stock market by understanding these factors.
Mutual funds are riskier than PPFs because they invest in stocks. The value of equity funds fluctuates due to the volatility of the stocks in which the fund invests. The value of debt funds fluctuates due to changes in bond market prices.
Debt funds, on the other hand, are by definition safer and more stable. It is critical to remember that not all mutual funds are dangerous. There are also low-risk mutual funds available.
The Public Provident Fund (PPF) is a government-backed risk-free investment.
Your objectives will determine whether or not a PPF is a good investment. It is a government-backed safe savings plan. The money put into a PPF account is used for budgetary purposes by the government, and the interest is also deposited by the government. As a result, the risk of default in the case of PPF is reduced. Given the circumstances.
Read: Important Benefits Of Filing Income Tax Returns
Understanding Mutual Fund Interest
One of the most important concepts to understand in investing is compound interest. Many people are unfamiliar with this aspect of investing, but it is critical to make investments profitable.
Compound (compounding) interest is critical in financial planning. A compound interest calculator is an extremely useful tool for long-term savings and investing goals.
The compound interest calculator demonstrates how the interest you earn each year is added to your principal so that the balance grows at an increasing rate rather than simply growing. A compound interest calculator is the foundation of everything from a personal savings plan to long-term stock market growth.
The investment objectives or goals of the investors determine whether they should invest in stocks, PPFs, or mutual funds. Stocks are individual company shares, whereas mutual funds can contain hundreds, if not thousands, of stocks, bonds, or other assets. PPF provides consistent profits and is ideal for low-risk investors.
You don’t have to choose between these three best investment plans. PPFs, mutual funds, and stocks can all be used in a portfolio to help you grow your wealth and achieve your financial objectives. Consider carefully how each might fit your needs and investing style.