The Week
transparent
Home     Columns    Your Money 
Columns
Your Money Renjit C.S.
Healthy option
All is well in buying health insurance till a claim arises. To bring in more accountability and make the policies more customer-friendly, the insurance regulator, IRDA, introduced policy portability last year.At the basic level, the policies provide financial relief, within the limits of the sum assured, by paying hospital charges, doctor's fee and cost of medicines. In an era of skyrocketing...
Spiraling Costs of Savings Bank accounts
“Welcome to the world of charges, fees and penalties”, seems to be the invisible writing on the welcome kits of Savings Bank accounts. One can count over 26 different charges being levied by banks on Savings Bank account holders pushing it ahead of credit cards, which is the costliest of all financial services.In effect this most essential banking service is becoming unaffordable to...
Deposits: Ensuring insurance
Any rumour about banks collapse would cause its depositors panic and anxiously queue up in front of all its branches to withdraw their deposits before the situation worsens. Thousands of small depositors had to wait for years to receive their investments, that too, in petty installments, following the closure of the prominent Kerala-based Palai Central Bank over four decades ago. The banking...
A safe safe
Are bank lockers the safest place to keep your gold ornaments, precious stones and silver? When it comes to daring robberies emptying valuables kept in safe deposit lockers, there is no difference between metros, cities, towns or villages. Before stuffing your documents and ornaments into bank lockers, hold on for a moment to rethink whther the bank will come to your rescue if these are lost or...
ATM usage—Tips and tricks
Automated Teller Machines (ATM) have made a great leap in banking—unmatched convenience, no long queue, no limited banking hours or holidays. From dispensing currency on demand to swallowing your card upon suspected tampering attempts, ATMs mimic life as part of the extended relationship banking.Increase in the number of ATM users and usage has also increased risks. The new set of...
Investment for children: Not a child’s play
“My wife and I are working in a software company in Bangalore. After five years of marriage, we have a newborn baby girl now. We bought a flat in an upcoming location and have our new Honda car. We are paying almost Rs 20,000 a month towards life insurance. My wife may not be able to get back to work for at least six months. After paying the EMIs for the housing loan and car loans, and...
Blind Spots in spending money
“We can be blind to the obvious, and we are also blind to our blindness”, is the central theme of a book recently published by Daniel Kahneman, a stalwart psychologist who won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 2002 in recognition of his pioneering work explaining human behaviour in dealing with money. The book exposes inherent dynamics and processes involved in overall human thinking...
Electronic Fund Transfer-Faster Safer and Cheaper
Cash, cheques and demand drafts continue to dominate the way still most of us pay money to others. The interesting fact is that, for most Indians, cash is the most preferred means for settling financial dues. Barring cash, the paper instruments like cheques and demand drafts causes delays and carry risks of frauds and loss of money, besides commission, collection charges and other costs. When the...
Know Your Customer is not just customary
To know or not, is not a choice for the bankers, financial institutions, mutual fund companies or stock brokers. As per the new guidelines on ‘Know Your Customer’, widely known by its acronym KYC, it is not only mandatory but also legally binding for financial institutions to identify the persons who seek to do financial transactions with them and know them fully once they become...
Not being a financial hostage
“Injurious to your financial health”, a statutory warning need to be tagged with all promo materials and advertisements enticing people to take high cost personal loans and credit-cards. The central reason for more and more people falling into the debt-trap and losing their sleeps is the deadly duo of personal loans and credit-card spending. As the banks are adding more teeth to the...
All about education loans
“Hey daddy! The thing is that some of my seniors who are now working in private companies had come over to the campus yesterday and they were telling us that their salaries are never enough to repay their education loans and that it's absolutely foolish to repay these loans, FYI(for your information) the government will write it off under the guarantee fund according to the new...
Insurance for sale, online
After banks in your drawing room, the Internet is bringing in insurance companies to your home or workplace. Graduating from the traditional agency channels, the insurance companies have been testing and promoting other channels to sell their products like bank-assurance through banks, mall-assurance in shopping malls and now the e-assurance way of online selling. Agents and advisors, the direct...
Ulips – fusion or confusion
Small things at times cause impacts bigger than their size. This is unbelievably true in the case of unit linked insurance plans, which are popularly known by the short sweet name – Ulips.   The charges companies cut back from your money though may appear small; the shrinking of the end of the term kitty you get from Ulips is really bleeding. Let’s crack some simple maths...
Ombudsman is here, don’t murmur or grumble
An ordinary pensioner approached banking ombudsman for help in finding a solution to the undue delay in disbursing his pension by the largest public sector bank.  The challenge raised by him triggered Reserve Bank of India to issue a circular making it mandatory for all banks to treat senior citizens as preferred customers, benefiting over seven million pensioners all over India. Next time...
Inside the world of demat accounts
It is not the risk involved in buying and selling of shares that deter farmers, entrepreneurs or even the salaried from investing their money in the stock market. Compared to the risks they take in farming or in small and micro enterprises, stock markets are better bets. The main hurdle between the capital market and the ordinary investors is the poor understanding of the minimum requirements for...
The new, improved savings bank account
What is common about your toothpaste, bed-tea and the bank where you maintain your savings account?  Simple! You are so addicted that you can’t change, at least not all of a sudden. Usually, one gets used to it so close that an easy switchover is usually unwelcomed.  In the wake of sweeping changes on value-added features of savings bank account, the competition in the market is...
Nominate for hassle-free succession
When it comes to financial planning, many forget about death. This puts the survivors in   protracted legal battle and other procedural hardships for smoothly inheriting wealth left behind by the deceased. Nomination is a simple but powerful step which could make the lives of the kith and kin easy after ones death. It thus ensures smooth receipt and inheritance of financial assets which...
Check cheques
As Indians still use hard currency to make payments for completing most of their monetary transactions, it is difficult to believe that our payment systems will soon migrate completely to paperless mechanisms. Even though electronic and digital technology based payment systems are gaining popularity, cheques continue to be the handy and trustworthy means for making within-the-country payments. In...
Deepening perils of identity theft
“I have been frequently changing the password of my email account to stave off hacking and misuse. Now I fear whether I need to change my name also, not sure how often, to prevent identity theft,” laments a victim of identity theft. It may sound exaggerated, but the truth is victims of identity theft are soaring day-by-day. In addition to financial losses, they undergo unnecessary...
A bank in your phone
It has been a busy day for Harish, a senior assistant working at Nirman Bhavan in Delhi. It is already 4.00 pm when he looks at his watch after sending an urgent file to his boss. As he is about to get a cup of tea, he gets a call from his son Amit, who is studying engineering in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. Amit needs money for paying his fees the next day. Harish punches in some information into his...
A passbook is your right
Das, a retired government employee and his wife moved to Kolkata to stay along with their son who is working in a software company.  He closed his bank accounts at his home town, as he was not sure about the availability of a convenient branch of the same bank near his new home.  He opened his bank account in a branch of a new generation bank across the street. It took a week for the...
transparent
freewheeling  |  Derek O'Brien
Knowing Kolkata, via satellite
Did the writer spend a significant time of his or her formative years in Kolkata?Was the writer educated in one of Kolkata’s best-known and elite institutions?Is the writer an exile from Kolkata and West Bengal, ...  »
grand slam  |  Sania Mirza
American dream come true
It is sheer love for the game that nurtures an upcoming tennis player.  As one begins to follow the sport with a growing passion, it is Grand Slam tournaments that capture your imagination and, soon, for a ...  »
transparent
transparent