Index Funds: Meaning, Reasons to Invest and Ways to Select

Posted On Wednesday, May 15, 2024


The world of investing can seem complex filled with jargon and endless options. But what if there was a way to invest in the overall market and achieve similar returns without the hassle of picking individual stocks? Index funds are a simple and powerful tool for those seeking to invest with a longer time horizon & create wealth.

What is an Index Fund?

Imagine a basket containing a variety of fruits, mirroring the composition of a fruit orchard. Similarly, index fund aims to achieve capital appreciation by tracking or replicating an index, such as the S&P BSE Sensex or Nifty 50. An index fund passively mirrors the index in terms of its portfolio composition.

Essentially, it is akin to owning a tiny piece of an index portfolio that reflects the part of overall index performance.

Why Choose an Index Fund?

Here are some compelling reasons to consider index funds for your investment journey:

Low Cost: Index funds are passively managed, meaning they don't require fund management team to actively pick and trade stocks. This translates to lower expense compared to actively managed funds. Lower expense mean more money stays in investors’ pocket, eventually compounding over time.

Diversification: By investing in an index fund, investors automatically spread their risk across multiple companies in different sectors. This built-in diversification helps mitigate the impact of any single stock's performance on the overall portfolio.

Long-Term Growth: index funds have delivered in line with index subject to tracking error, mirroring the overall market growth.

Simplicity: Index funds are suitable to those who do not prefer extensive tracking whereas anticipate performance that is in line with the index returns. Index funds are easy to understand and manage. There is no need to spend hours researching individual companies or trying to time the market. Therefore, this is an excellent option for novice investors inexperienced in picking the right stocks. Index Funds also offer investors the option of investing through an SIP (systematic investment plan).

Who should invest in an Index Fund?

1. Investors not looking to beat the market but generate returns in line with the index

2. Investors looking for a relatively low-cost investment option

3. Investors looking for a simple way to invest without the hassle of tracking NAV or timing the markets

Getting Started with Index Funds

A key indicator for choosing a good index fund is its tracking error. The tracking error indicates how much the fund performance has deviated from the benchmark index. In simple words, tracking error is the difference in returns between an Index Fund and the index which it is tracking. Tracking error occurs in both scenarios, i.e. outperforming the index and underperforming the index.

When selecting a passively managed fund, investors should take care to choose a fund with a low tracking error and with track record of earning reasonable returns compared to the index over the long term.

Index funds offer a powerful and convenient way to participate in India’s long-term growth story. They are a great foundation for any investment portfolio, providing peace of mind and the potential for earning long-term risk adjusted returns.

Disclaimer, Statutory Details & Risk Factors:

The views expressed here in this Article / Video are for general information and reading purpose only and do not constitute any guidelines and recommendations on any course of action to be followed by the reader. Quantum AMC / Quantum Mutual Fund is not guaranteeing / offering / communicating any indicative yield on investments made in the scheme(s). The views are not meant to serve as a professional guide / investment advice / intended to be an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial product or instrument or mutual fund units for the reader. The Article / Video has been prepared on the basis of publicly available information, internally developed data and other sources believed to be reliable. Whilst no action has been solicited based upon the information provided herein, due care has been taken to ensure that the facts are accurate and views given are fair and reasonable as on date. Readers of the Article / Video should rely on information/data arising out of their own investigations and advised to seek independent professional advice and arrive at an informed decision before making any investments. None of the Quantum Advisors, Quantum AMC, Quantum Trustee or Quantum Mutual Fund, their Affiliates or Representative shall be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential, punitive or exemplary losses or damages including lost profits arising in any way on account of any action taken basis the data / information / views provided in the Article / video.

Mutual Fund investments are subject to market risks read all scheme related documents carefully.

Above article is authored by Quantum.

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