Difference between revisions of "Investing from India"

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{{Under construction| comment = Comments are solicited in this {{Forum post|t =324154 | title = Wiki - Investing in India}}}}
 
 
{{India}}
 
{{India}}
 
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[[File:Bombay Stock Exchange Building.jpg|thumb|BSE- Bombay Stock Exchange Building  (By Niyantha Shekhar - [https://www.flickr.com/photos/niyantha/2134853158/in/photostream/ Flicker photostream]; [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0 Creative Commons Attribution 2.0]; [https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=21583922 Link]) ]]
  
 
This page intends to provide information to retail Indian residents investing in India. While Vanguard is yet to enter the Indian market, it is possible to apply the Bogleheads principles for portfolio construction. This page provides information on available investment options and their features, including the tax treatment of various financial instruments.
 
This page intends to provide information to retail Indian residents investing in India. While Vanguard is yet to enter the Indian market, it is possible to apply the Bogleheads principles for portfolio construction. This page provides information on available investment options and their features, including the tax treatment of various financial instruments.
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'''Note for non-Indian readers''': This page uses the Indian numbering system<ref group="note" name="numbering">The Indian numbering system groups digits into powers of one hundred, except for the first thousand. 1,00,000 (one hundred thousand) is a ''lakh'', and 1,00,00,000 (ten million) is a ''crore''. For more, see: {{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_numbering_system| title=Indian numbering system| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 4, 2020}}</ref> for monetary values.
  
 
==Savings and investing in India==
 
==Savings and investing in India==
 
Retail investors in India have access to the investments below:
 
Retail investors in India have access to the investments below:
#Fixed Deposits (FDs): These are debt instruments similar to CDs in the US. Term ranges from 7 days to 10 years. Balance up to Rs 100,000 at each bank is guaranteed by the government. Deposit can be made at any bank or post office.
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#Fixed Deposits (FDs): These are debt instruments similar to CDs in the US. Term ranges from 7 days to 10 years. Balance up to Rs&nbsp;5,00,000 at each bank is guaranteed by the government.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://www.dicgc.org.in/FD_A-GuideToDepositInsurance.html| title=DICGC - For Depositors - A Guide to Deposit Insurance| publisher=DICGC| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> Deposit can be made at any bank or post office.
#Recurring Deposits (RDs): These are similar to FDs except that monthly contributions are made instead of an upfront lumpsum. Interest rate and term is fixed upfront.
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#Recurring Deposits (RDs): These are similar to FDs except that monthly contributions are made instead of an upfront lump-sum. Interest rate and term is fixed upfront.
#Public Provident Fund (PPF): PPF is a debt saving instrument where investments earn a small spread over the prevailing government bond yields. Interest rate is declared every quarter by the government and entire account balance is fully guaranteed by the Central government. PPF taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Maximum yearly limit for investment is Rs 150,000. The account matures in 15 years and investors can withdraw the entire balance. Alternatively, investors have a choice to extend the account in bunches of 5 years indefinitely.  
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#Public Provident Fund (PPF): PPF is a debt saving instrument where investments earn a small spread over the prevailing government bond yields.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_Provident_Fund_(India)| title=Public Provident Fund (India)| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> Interest rate is declared every quarter by the government and entire account balance is fully guaranteed by the Central government. PPF taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Maximum yearly limit for investment is Rs&nbsp;1,50,000. The account matures in 15 years and investors can withdraw the entire balance. Alternatively, investors have a choice to extend the account in bunches of 5 years indefinitely.  
#National Pension System (NPS): NPS is a defined contribution retirement plan similar to 401(k) plans offered in the US. The portfolio consists of four components: Equities, Corporate bonds, Government bonds and Alternative Investment. Investors can choose their asset allocation as per their risk tolerance and age. Portfolio is re-balanced once a year on investor's birthday. NPS taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Investors are required to buy an annuity with at least 40% of portfolio amount on withdrawal on retirement at age 60.
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#National Pension System (NPS): NPS is a defined contribution retirement plan similar to 401(k) plans offered in the US.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Pension_System| title=National Pension System| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> The portfolio consists of four components: Equities, Corporate bonds, Government bonds and Alternative Investment. Investors can choose their asset allocation as per their risk tolerance and age. Portfolio is re-balanced once a year on investor's birthday. NPS taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Investors are required to buy an annuity with at least 40% of portfolio amount on withdrawal on retirement at age 60.
#Employees' Provident Fund (EPF): EPF is retirement plan where equal amount is contributed by employee and employer every month and the account earns an interest as declared by the central government every year. The usual amount of contribution is 12% of basic pay. An employee can choose to contribute more through Voluntary Contribution Fund (VPF).
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#Employees' Provident Fund (EPF): EPF is retirement plan where equal amount is contributed by employee and employer every month and the account earns an interest as declared by the central government every year.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Employees%27_Provident_Fund_Organisation| title=Employees' Provident Fund Organisation| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> The usual amount of contribution is 12% of basic pay. An employee can choose to contribute more through Voluntary Contribution Fund (VPF).
#Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY) (English: ''Girl Child Prosperity Plan''): SSY is a saving scheme similar to PPF and is targeted at parents of girl children. It encourages parents to save for education and marriage of girls. Unlike PPF, the account matures in 21 years and contributions can be made for first 14 years. The girl on attaining the age of 18 can withdraw up to 50% of the account balance for higher education. Tax treatment is similar to PPF but SSY currently earns slightly higher interest than PPF.
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#Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY) (English: ''Girl Child Prosperity Plan''): SSY is a saving scheme similar to PPF and is targeted at parents of girl children.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sukanya_Samriddhi_Account| title=Sukanya Samriddhi Account| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> It encourages parents to save for education and marriage of girls. Unlike PPF, the account matures in 21 years and contributions can be made for first 14 years. The girl on attaining the age of 18 can withdraw up to 50% of the account balance for higher education. Tax treatment is similar to PPF but SSY currently earns slightly higher interest than PPF.
#Mutual Funds and ETFs: India has a large stock and debt market and there are thousands of mutual funds available for investors. These funds include equity mutual funds and debt mutual funds of various categories. There are also a large number of Gold ETFs available.
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#Mutual funds and ETFs: India has a large stock and debt market and there are thousands of mutual funds available for investors. These funds include equity mutual funds and debt mutual funds of various categories. There are also a large number of Gold ETFs available.
#Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs): In order to stop the large import of gold in India due to high demand, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launched SGBs to encourage people to hold gold in paper format. Currently, it is one of the best ways to hold gold since there is no expense ratio, and SGBs pay 2.5% interest annually. On maturity, the amount equal to market value of gold in India is paid out, as published by India Bullion and Jewellers Association.
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#Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs): In order to stop the large import of gold in India due to high demand, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launched SGBs to encourage people to hold gold in paper format. Currently, it is one of the best ways to hold gold since there is no expense ratio, and SGBs pay 2.5% interest annually.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://cleartax.in/s/sovereign-gold-bonds| title=Sovereign Gold Bonds Schemes in India - 2020| publisher=cleartax| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}</ref> On maturity, the amount equal to market value of gold in India is paid out, as published by India Bullion and Jewellers Association.
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#Equity Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS): With a lock-in period of 3 years this scheme offers tax deduction of up to Rs&nbsp;1,50,000 under section 80C.<ref>{{cite web| url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equity_Linked_Savings_Scheme| title=Equity Linked Savings Scheme| publisher=Wikipedia| accessdate=September 4, 2020}}</ref> However, investments must be held in a qualified closed ended fund.
  
 
==Index funds in India==
 
==Index funds in India==
===Benchmarks and Underlying securities===
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===Benchmarks and underlying securities===
As per the direction of Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Association of Mutual Funds of India (AMFI) classifies all listed stocks in India into large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap once every six months. The categorisation is as below in the decreasing order of market cap:
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As per the direction of [https://www.sebi.gov.in/ Securities and Exchange Board of India] (SEBI), [https://www.amfiindia.com/ Association of Mutual Funds of India] (AMFI) classifies all listed stocks in India into large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap once every six months. The categorisation is as below in the decreasing order of market cap:
 
#Large-cap: Stocks ranked 1 to 100
 
#Large-cap: Stocks ranked 1 to 100
 
#Mid-cap: Stocks ranked 101 to 250
 
#Mid-cap: Stocks ranked 101 to 250
 
#Small-cap: Stocks ranked 251 and below.
 
#Small-cap: Stocks ranked 251 and below.
  
The two major stock exchanges in India are National Stocks Exchange (NSE) and Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Both own subsidiaries that provide benchmarks that mutual funds track. BSE Sensex and Nifty 50 are oldest and most popular equity benchmarks but over time broader benchmarks have been introduced.
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The two major stock exchanges in India are [https://www.nseindia.com/ National Stock Exchange] (NSE) and [https://www.bseindia.com/ Bombay Stock Exchange] (BSE). Both own subsidiaries that provide benchmarks that mutual funds track. BSE Sensex and Nifty 50 are oldest and most popular equity benchmarks but over time broader benchmarks have been introduced.
  
 
'''Large-Cap Benchmarks'''
 
'''Large-Cap Benchmarks'''
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===Stock index funds===
 
===Stock index funds===
Currently, Index mutual funds (excluding ETFs) are available in India only for large-cap indices. Most index funds benchmark to Sensex, Nifty 50 or Nifty Next 50. Some of the good options are:
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Currently, index mutual funds (excluding ETFs) are available in India only for large-cap indices. Most index funds benchmark to Sensex, Nifty 50 or Nifty Next 50. Some of the good options are:
 
{| class="wikitable"
 
{| class="wikitable"
 
!Fund !! Expense ratio !! Benchmark
 
!Fund !! Expense ratio !! Benchmark
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|}
 
|}
  
The only 3 available ETFs are:
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The only available ETFs are:
 
{| class="wikitable"
 
{| class="wikitable"
 
!Fund !! Expense ratio !! Benchmark
 
!Fund !! Expense ratio !! Benchmark
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==Taxation==
 
==Taxation==
Investment in equity and equity-oriented mutual funds and ETFs for more than 1 year qualifies for long-term taxation, while the same time for debt-oriented mutual funds is 3 years. Below are the tax rates for these:
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Investment in equity and equity-oriented mutual funds and ETFs for more than 1 year qualifies for long-term taxation, while the same time for debt-oriented mutual funds is 3 years.{{Citation needed}} Below are the tax rates for these:
  
#Equity MF short-term capital gain: 15% plus surcharges
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#Equity mutual fund short-term capital gain: 15% plus surcharges
#Equity MF long-term capital gain: 10% (exempted up to a gain amount of Rs 100,000 per year)
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#Equity mutual fund long-term capital gain: 10% (exempted up to a gain amount of Rs&nbsp;1,00,000 per year)
#Debt MF short-term capital gain: Marginal tax rate of the individual
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#Debt mutual fund short-term capital gain: Marginal tax rate of the individual
#Debt MF long-term capital gain: 20% with indexation, plus surcharges
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#Debt mutual fund long-term capital gain: 20% with indexation, plus surcharges
  
 
Some strategies for tax efficiency:
 
Some strategies for tax efficiency:
#Since there is no wash-sale rule in India and equity MF capital gains attract no tax up to a gain of Rs 100,000 per year, it is advised to sell and immediately buy equity funds to increase cost basis. In other words, gains up to Rs 100,000 should be booked every year. This ensures utilisation of exempted limit for the year.
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#Since there is no wash-sale rule in India and equity mutual fund capital gains attract no tax up to a gain of Rs&nbsp;1,00,000 per year,{{Citation needed}} it is advised to sell and immediately buy equity funds to increase cost basis. In other words, gains up to Rs&nbsp;1,00,000 should be booked every year. This ensures utilisation of exempted limit for the year.
 
#Tax loss harvesting has limited use. Capital losses can only be offset against capital gains and not against any other income source. Long-term loss can only be offset against long-term gain while short-term loss can be offset against either short-term gain or long-term gain. Losses can be carried forward up to a maximum of 8 years.
 
#Tax loss harvesting has limited use. Capital losses can only be offset against capital gains and not against any other income source. Long-term loss can only be offset against long-term gain while short-term loss can be offset against either short-term gain or long-term gain. Losses can be carried forward up to a maximum of 8 years.
#A point to be noted is that International equity mutual funds are treated as debt-oriented MFs for taxation purpose, i.e., they qualify for long term capital gains only after 3 years and are taxed at 20% with indexation.
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#A point to be noted is that International equity mutual funds are treated as debt-oriented mutual funds for taxation purpose, i.e., they qualify for long term capital gains only after 3 years and are taxed at 20% with indexation.
  
 
==Brokerages==
 
==Brokerages==
The largest broker by number of clients in India is Zerodha and is ideal for buy-and-hold investors. It charges zero brokerage for equity delivery and hence charges no brokerage on buying or selling ETFs (Rs 20 brokerage for intra-day trades). It charges Rs 300 per year as account maintenance fees. Largest expense borne by investors is Securities Transaction Tax (STT) which is charged at 0.1% of traded amount.
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The largest broker by number of clients in India is [https://zerodha.com/ Zerodha] and is ideal for buy-and-hold investors. It charges zero brokerage for equity delivery and hence charges no brokerage on buying or selling ETFs (Rs&nbsp;20 brokerage for intra-day trades). It charges Rs&nbsp;300 per year as account maintenance fees. Largest expense borne by investors is Securities Transaction Tax (STT) which is charged at 0.1% of traded amount.
 
 
Other brokers include ShareKhan and other full-service brokers like ICICI Securities, HDFC Securities etc.
 
  
==Investing in Foreign Assets==
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Other brokers include [https://www.sharekhan.com/ ShareKhan] and other full-service brokers like ICICI Securities, HDFC Securities etc.
There are two ways of investing in foreign assets. One by Indian Mutual Fund (of which you can choose pure foreign equity funds which are taxed as debt funds or hybrid funds having 65% Indian Equities 35% Foreign Equities which are taxed as Indian Equity fund) method and the other by investing using foreign brokerage account like Interactive Brokers. If using Indian Mutual Fund and one doesn't mind debt fund taxation they can use S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 index funds from Motilal Oswal. If one wants equity fund taxation than here is list of funds investing via 65/35 structure:
 
#Aditya Birla SL International Equity Fund Plan B
 
#Axis ESG Equity Fund
 
#Templeton India Equity Income Fund (Emerging Markets Only)
 
#Parag Parikh Long Term Equity Fund
 
#Axis Growth Opp Fund
 
#Aditya Birla SL Dividend Yield Fund
 
#SBI Focused Equity Fund
 
#Franklin India Focused Equity Fund
 
#Franklin India Bluechip Fund
 
#IDFC Multi Cap Fund
 
#Franklin India Equity Advantage Fund
 
#Franklin India Prima Fund
 
#SBI Magnum Global Fund
 
#ICICI Pru MNC Fund
 
#Kotak Pioneer Fund (Foreign=Tech Fund)
 
  
Sector:
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==Investing in foreign assets==
#Franklin India Technology Fund
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{{User-generated|section|date=September 2020}}
#DSP Natural Res & New Energy Fund
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There are two ways of investing in foreign assets. One is through Indian mutual funds (of which you can choose pure foreign equity funds which are taxed as debt funds or hybrid funds having 65% Indian Equities 35% Foreign Equities which are taxed as an Indian equity fund), and the other is by investing using a foreign brokerage account like Interactive Brokers.
#DSP Healthcare Fund
 
#SBI Technology Opp Fund
 
#Aditya Birla SL Digital India Fund
 
#Aditya Birla SL Pharma & HealthCare Fund
 
#ICICI Pru FMCG Fund
 
  
Out of these 65/35 funds only one fund Parag Parikh Long Term Equity uses currency hedging and as a result earns 5-6% returns due to inflation and interest rate differences between USA (country in which the fund invests majority of foreign assets in) and India.  
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===Investing using Indian mutual funds===
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Debt Fund Taxation:
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#[https://www.valueresearchonline.com/funds/40997/motilal-oswal-500-index-fund-direct-plan/ Motilal Oswal S&P 500]
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#[https://www.valueresearchonline.com/funds/12498/motilal-oswal-nasdaq-100-exchange-traded-fund Motilal Oswal Nasdaq 100 Exchange Traded Fund]
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#[https://www.valueresearchonline.com/funds/41074/nippon-india-multi-asset-fund-direct-plan/ Nippon India Multi Asset Fund]
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#[https://www.valueresearchonline.com/funds/41070/motilal-oswal-multi-asset-fund-direct-plan/ Motilal Oswal Multi Asset Fund]
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Others can be found using the [https://www.valueresearchonline.com/funds/selector/category/118/equity-international/?plan-type=direct&exclude=suspended-plans&tab=snapshot ValueResearch International Search].
  
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Equity Taxation (Foreign Stocks not Exceeding 35% of Fund Portfolio):
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#Aditya Birla SL International Equity Fund Plan B (24.58% Exposure November 2020)
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#Axis ESG Equity Fund (25.26% Exposure November 2020)
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#Templeton India Equity Income Fund (20.33% Exposure November 2020, Emerging Markets Only)
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#Parag Parikh Long Term Equity Fund (28.79% Exposure November 2020)
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#Axis Growth Opp Fund (24.45% Exposure November 2020)
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#Aditya Birla SL Dividend Yield Fund (9.65% Exposure November 2020)
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#SBI Focused Equity Fund (9.41% Exposure November 2020)
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#IDFC Multi Cap Fund (2.55% Exposure November 2020)
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#SBI Magnum Global Fund (2.27% Exposure November 2020)
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#ICICI Pru MNC Fund (8.22% Exposure October 2020)
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#Kotak Pioneer Fund (18.93% Exposure invested in "Signature Global Technology Corporate Class Fund -994" November 2020)
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#DSP Value Fund (25% Exposure Dec 2020)
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#Axis Special Situations Fund
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#Principal Large Cap Fund (12.15% Exposure November 2020)
  
'''If one wants to want invest Overseas Mutual Fund ETF/Mutual Fund (listed in foreign stock exchange like NYSE/LSE/NASDAQ by using Charles Schwab/Interactive Brokers/Vested Finance)''':
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Sector:
 
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#Franklin India Technology Fund (24.92% of which 8.58% is invested in Franklin Technology Fund,Class I (Acc))
 
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#DSP Natural Res & New Energy Fund (25.69% Exposure of which 15.5% is invested in BlackRock Global Funds- Sustainable Energy Fund (Class I2 USD Shares) and the remaining 10.19% is invested in BGF - World Energy Fund (Class I2 USD Shares))
'''Part A: Reporting of foreign assets and income'''
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#DSP Healthcare Fund (8.95% Exposure November 30,2020)
 
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#SBI Technology Opp Fund (8.17% Exposure November 30,2020)
'''You must fill out more detailed IT returns: You cannot use Saral ITR form if you hold any foreign assets''' (even if those are acquired by default, such as via company stock awards or 401k when you were an NRI.) If you possess any foreign holdings, including bank accounts or stocks or real estate or just cash in foreign brokerage accounts, '''you are required to fill out FA & FSI schedules of ITR 2/ ITR 3 or others as applicable'''.
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#Aditya Birla SL Digital India Fund (4.47% Exposure November 30 2020)
 
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#Edelweiss MSCI India Domestic & World Healthcare 45 Index Fund (30% Exposure)
'''This is true even if you have no other income to disclose, or even if your taxable income is below tax limit'''!
 
 
 
'''Even if you have had no foreign transactions''' during the year and only passively held any foreign assets, you must fill up FA schedule.
 
 
 
'''Disclose foreign income including dividends: You have to fill out the FSI schedule''' to show transactions resulting in Income from Foreign Sources, and ensure that this income is also included in your total income computation.
 
 
 
You have to include '''any capital gains''' (short-term or long-term) in CG schedule.
 
 
 
This is applicable even if you don't receive any proceeds in your Indian bank account and/or you let the gains stay with your broker as cash balance, or use it for another investment or deposit to overseas bank account
 
 
 
You have to include the '''Foreign Dividend income''' in OS schedule under "Income from Other Sources - Dividends"
 
 
 
This is applicable even if you hold stocks with '''automatic dividend reinvestment option''', or even if you don't actually receive the dividend in your Indian bank accounts and it stays with the broker as cash balance or you transfer it to your overseas bank account!
 
 
 
You have to reconcile all your transactions to Indian [https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/wealth/tax/reporting-of-foreign-assets-in-income-tax-return-cbdt-issues-clarification/articleshow/70890105.cms?from=mdr financial year & accounting period] (Apr 1 – March 31) and ensure that you do have all the statements to back up those transactions.
 
 
 
'''While reporting your foreign holdings and transactions, you cannot use that day's exchange rate as available from RBI or [https://www.fbil.org.in/securities?op=referencerate&mq=o FBIL]!''' There are some weird and arcane rules about how the foreign transactions are to be converted into INR. We have to use [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/Rules/Income-Tax%20Rules/103120000000007546.htm specific month-end rates from SBI]!) This applies to purchase/sale transactions as well as dividends and tax withholdings / credits.
 
 
 
SBI Telegraphic Transfer (TT) rates are available online, on their own website, for a given day. However, their historical rates are not readily available. '''IT Department demands that you use the previous month-end’s rates''', and not the rates as per your actual transaction date. This means, '''you must carefully download and preserve all the month-end TT rates throughout the financial year'''. [https://github.com/skbly7/sbi-tt-rates-historical Note: A person compiled SBI TT rates from 2nd July 2020 so you don't have to do it from 2nd July].
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
'''Part B: Reporting of foreign taxes paid / withheld and claiming tax relief for the same.
 
'''
 
'''Report your tax relief claim: You need to fill out [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/forms/income-tax%20rules/itr62form67.pdf Form 67]''' that details the foreign transactions (dividends), US IRS withholdings etc. and also provide supporting documents (such as 1042-S from your broker, as well as any broker statements.) The form should ideally be submitted before you file your ITR for the given assessment year.
 
 
 
This form can be [https://www.rsm.global/india/insights/tax-insights/newsflash-form-67-enabled-income-tax-e-filing-portal-claiming-foreign-tax filled out online] (in the incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in portal after you log in) and can be submitted online along with proofs, since these past few years. You do get an acknowledgement with a reference number.
 
 
 
'''Claim tax relief in ITR for any foreign taxes paid: You need to fill out schedule TR of ITR''' for [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/Rules/Income-Tax%20Rules/rule128.htm any tax relief you are claiming]. (In Excel utility, TR & FA are on the same page.)
 
 
 
You can claim tax relief under section 90 or 90A or 91, depending upon whether DTAA exists with that country or not.
 
  
In FA schedule, you have to also mention the article of DTAA under which tax relief is claimed.
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Out of these 65/35 funds only one fund, Parag Parikh Long Term Equity, uses currency hedging and as a result earns 5-6% returns due to inflation and interest rate differences between the USA (country in which the fund invests its majority of foreign assets) and India.
  
As an example: Looking at the case of US, where IRS withholdings are at the rate of 25%: Since OS gets added in your income computation and thus overall tax computation, and since TR gets included in your tax computation as a credit similar to Indian TDS, you would effectively be paying the 5% or so of difference to Indian ITD, or taking some money back if you are in lower than 25% tax brackets.)
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===Investing using overseas mutual funds or ETFs===
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If investing using overseas mutual funds or ETFs -- that is, ETFs listed in a foreign stock exchange like NYSE, LSE, or NASDAQ, and held with brokers such as [[Charles Schwab]], [[Interactive Brokers]], [https://vested.co.in/ Vested Finance] -- then the following details, created by Redditor '4thinker_india',<ref>{{cite web| url=https://archive.vn/9SDIU| title=Beware the taxation angle before you invest in "direct" foreign equity..!| author=Redditor '4thinker_india'| date=June 2, 2020| accessdate=September 2, 2020}}{{User-generated source|date=September 2020}}</ref> need to be taken into account.
  
i. In case of US, you can claim TR under section 90, articles 10 & 25.
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====Part A: Reporting of foreign assets and income====
  
All '''the steps above would ensure that your foreign assets are reported in ITR, your foreign income is included in your income computation and your withheld foreign taxes are accounted for in your tax computation'''.
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#'''You must fill out more detailed IT returns: You cannot use Saral ITR form if you hold any foreign assets''' (even if those are acquired by default, such as via company stock awards or 401k when you were an NRI.) If you possess any foreign holdings, including bank accounts or stocks or real estate or just cash in foreign brokerage accounts, '''you are required to fill out FA schedule (FSI only if you want to claim foreign tax credit) of ITR 2/ ITR 3 or others as applicable'''.
 +
##'''[https://archive.vn/KTXAp This is true] even if you have no other income to disclose, or even if your taxable income is below the tax limit'''!
 +
##'''Even if you have had no foreign transactions''' during the year and only passively held any foreign assets, you must fill up FA schedule.
 +
#'''Disclose foreign income including dividends: You have to fill out the FSI schedule''' to show transactions resulting in Income from Foreign Sources, and ensure that this income is also included in your total income computation.
 +
##You have to include the '''Foreign Dividend income''' in OS schedule under "Income from Other Sources - Dividends".<br>This is applicable even if you hold stocks with '''automatic dividend reinvestment option''', or even if you don't actually receive the dividend in your Indian bank accounts and it stays with the broker as cash balance or you transfer it to your overseas bank account!
 +
##You have to reconcile all your transactions to Indian [https://archive.vn/SnoJo financial year & accounting period] (Apr 1 – March 31) and ensure that you do have all the statements to back up those transactions.
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#'''While reporting your foreign holdings and transactions, you can use the [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/_layouts/15/dit/Pages/viewer.aspx?grp=Rule&cname=CMSID&cval=103120000000007372&searchFilter=%5B{%22CrawledPropertyKey%22:0,%22Value%22:%22Income-tax%20Rules%22,%22SearchOperand%22:2},{%22CrawledPropertyKey%22:1,%22Value%22:%22Rule%22,%22SearchOperand%22:2}%5D&k=income%20tax,income%20tax&IsDlg=0 RBI Reference Rate]. There are [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/Rules/Income-Tax%20Rules/103120000000007546.htm rules] on how to convert the foreign transactions into INR. '''IT Department demands that you use the previous month-end’s rates''', and not the rates as per your actual transaction date.
  
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====Part B: Reporting of foreign taxes paid or withheld and claiming tax relief for these====
 +
#'''Report your tax relief claim: You need to fill out [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/forms/income-tax%20rules/itr62form67.pdf Form 67]''' that details the foreign transactions (dividends), US IRS withholdings etc. and also provide supporting documents (such as 1042-S from your broker, as well as any broker statements.) The form should ideally be submitted before you file your ITR for the given assessment year.
 +
##This form can be [https://archive.vn/T8edk filled out online] (in the incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in portal after you log in) and can be submitted online along with proofs, since these past few years. You do get an acknowledgement with a reference number.
 +
#'''Claim tax relief in ITR for any foreign taxes paid: You need to fill out schedule TR of ITR''' for [https://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/Rules/Income-Tax%20Rules/rule128.htm any tax relief you are claiming]. (In Excel utility, TR & FA are on the same page.)
 +
##You can claim tax relief under section 90 or 90A or 91, depending upon whether DTAA exists with that country or not.
 +
##In FA schedule, you have to also mention the article of DTAA under which tax relief is claimed.
 +
##As an example: Looking at the case of US, where IRS withholdings are at the rate of 25%: Since OS gets added in your income computation and thus overall tax computation, and since TR gets included in your tax computation as a credit similar to Indian TDS, you would effectively be paying the 5% or so of difference to Indian ITD, or taking some money back if you are in lower than 25% tax brackets.)
 +
###In case of US, you can claim TR under section 90, articles 10 & 25.
 +
##All '''the steps above would ensure that your foreign assets are reported in ITR, your foreign income is included in your income computation and your withheld foreign taxes are accounted for in your tax computation'''.
  
 +
====Part C: In practice====
  
'''Part C: In practice:
 
'''
 
 
This is where the things get murkier.
 
This is where the things get murkier.
 +
#It seems that presently, there is little information exchange available between US IRS and Indian ITD, at least as far as small tax payers are concerned. Even if there is info exchange, maybe ITD pays only limited attention to entire set of data. Therefore, '''CPC is not in a position to validate the foreign taxes paid to IRS'''.
 +
##This, '''even though you ensure that your foreign broker has your Indian PAN recorded with him and he mentions the same in 1042-S form.'''<ref group="note">Form 1042-S is the US-equivalent of Form 16-A that we get in India from Banks as TDS statement.</ref>
 +
#As a result, CPC simply expresses its inability to process any ITR that has its TR schedule filled out and just transfers it to your Jurisdictional AO, '''who can happily sit on your ITR for years without processing it.''' (Or sometimes, he processes the ITR without giving any Foreign Tax relief, which in turn may result in a tax demand.)
 +
#In effect, you are never certain if rest of the sections of your ITR are in order, and you are not sure if you would really be given foreign tax credit, and you're not sure when you will be issued any refunds due.
  
It seems that presently, there is little information exchange available between US IRS and Indian ITD, at least as far as small tax payers are concerned. Even if there is info exchange, maybe ITD pays only limited attention to entire set of data. Therefore, '''CPC is not in a position to validate the foreign taxes paid to IRS'''.
+
====Part D: Repercussions of non-compliance====
 
 
This, '''even though you ensure that your foreign broker has your Indian PAN recorded with him and he mentions the same in 1042-S form.''' (1042-S is the US-equivalent of Form 16-A that we get in India from Banks as TDS statement.)
 
 
 
As a result, CPC simply expresses its inability to process any ITR that has its TR schedule filled out and just transfers it to your Jurisdictional AO, '''who can happily sit on your ITR for years without processing it.''' (or sometimes, he processes the ITR without giving any Foreign Tax relief, which in turn may result in a tax demand.)
 
 
 
In effect, you are never certain if rest of the sections of your ITR are in order, and you are not sure if you would really be given foreign tax credit, and you're not sure when you will be issued any refunds due.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
'''Part D: Repercussions of Non-compliance
 
'''
 
'''Failure to report your foreign assets or income [https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/personal-finance/disclose-overseas-income-in-tax-returns-or-face-penal-action-4138181.html invites penal action] under Black Money Act 2015'''.
 
 
 
Undisclosed foreign income and asset will be taxed at a flat rate of 30 percent.
 
 
 
Concealment of income and assets and evasion of tax in relation to foreign assets will be liable for prosecution with punishment of rigorous imprisonment up to 10 years
 
 
 
Penalty for concealment of income and assets to be levied at 300 percent of the tax sought to be evaded
 
  
Penalty of Rs. 10 lakhs may be levied on non-filing of tax return or filing of tax return with inadequate disclosure of foreign assets
+
'''Failure to report your foreign assets or income [https://archive.vn/VMlmJ invites penal action] under Black Money Act 2015'''.
'''
+
#Undisclosed foreign income and asset will be taxed at a flat rate of 30 percent.
 +
#Concealment of income and assets and evasion of tax in relation to foreign assets will be liable for prosecution with punishment of rigorous imprisonment up to 10 years.
 +
#Penalty for concealment of income and assets to be levied at 300 percent of the tax sought to be evaded.
 +
#Penalty of Rs&nbsp;10,00,000 may be levied on non-filing of tax return or filing of tax return with inadequate disclosure of foreign assets.'''
  
 
==Notes==
 
==Notes==
Line 247: Line 220:
  
 
==References==
 
==References==
[https://www.reddit.com/r/IndiaInvestments/comments/gv6fum/beware_the_taxation_angle_before_you_invest_in/ Credits to /u/4thinker_india for Information regarding buying Mutual Funds/ETF's in Overseas stock Exchange like LSE/NYSE/NASDAQ].
 
 
{{Reflist}}
 
{{Reflist}}
  
Line 253: Line 225:
 
*{{Forum post | title = Wiki - Investing from India | t = 324154 | author = TedSwippet | date = Aug 29, 2020}}
 
*{{Forum post | title = Wiki - Investing from India | t = 324154 | author = TedSwippet | date = Aug 29, 2020}}
 
{{Non-US domiciles}}
 
{{Non-US domiciles}}
 +
[[Category:India]]

Revision as of 10:11, 15 December 2020

Indiaflag.png This article contains details specific to investors in India. However, it does not apply to residents of India who are also United States (US) citizens or US permanent residents.
BSE- Bombay Stock Exchange Building (By Niyantha Shekhar - Flicker photostream; Creative Commons Attribution 2.0; Link)

This page intends to provide information to retail Indian residents investing in India. While Vanguard is yet to enter the Indian market, it is possible to apply the Bogleheads principles for portfolio construction. This page provides information on available investment options and their features, including the tax treatment of various financial instruments.

Note for non-Indian readers: This page uses the Indian numbering system[note 1] for monetary values.

Savings and investing in India

Retail investors in India have access to the investments below:

  1. Fixed Deposits (FDs): These are debt instruments similar to CDs in the US. Term ranges from 7 days to 10 years. Balance up to Rs 5,00,000 at each bank is guaranteed by the government.[1] Deposit can be made at any bank or post office.
  2. Recurring Deposits (RDs): These are similar to FDs except that monthly contributions are made instead of an upfront lump-sum. Interest rate and term is fixed upfront.
  3. Public Provident Fund (PPF): PPF is a debt saving instrument where investments earn a small spread over the prevailing government bond yields.[2] Interest rate is declared every quarter by the government and entire account balance is fully guaranteed by the Central government. PPF taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Maximum yearly limit for investment is Rs 1,50,000. The account matures in 15 years and investors can withdraw the entire balance. Alternatively, investors have a choice to extend the account in bunches of 5 years indefinitely.
  4. National Pension System (NPS): NPS is a defined contribution retirement plan similar to 401(k) plans offered in the US.[3] The portfolio consists of four components: Equities, Corporate bonds, Government bonds and Alternative Investment. Investors can choose their asset allocation as per their risk tolerance and age. Portfolio is re-balanced once a year on investor's birthday. NPS taxation is EEE in nature, meaning that contributions, accumulations and withdrawals are tax-free. Investors are required to buy an annuity with at least 40% of portfolio amount on withdrawal on retirement at age 60.
  5. Employees' Provident Fund (EPF): EPF is retirement plan where equal amount is contributed by employee and employer every month and the account earns an interest as declared by the central government every year.[4] The usual amount of contribution is 12% of basic pay. An employee can choose to contribute more through Voluntary Contribution Fund (VPF).
  6. Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana (SSY) (English: Girl Child Prosperity Plan): SSY is a saving scheme similar to PPF and is targeted at parents of girl children.[5] It encourages parents to save for education and marriage of girls. Unlike PPF, the account matures in 21 years and contributions can be made for first 14 years. The girl on attaining the age of 18 can withdraw up to 50% of the account balance for higher education. Tax treatment is similar to PPF but SSY currently earns slightly higher interest than PPF.
  7. Mutual funds and ETFs: India has a large stock and debt market and there are thousands of mutual funds available for investors. These funds include equity mutual funds and debt mutual funds of various categories. There are also a large number of Gold ETFs available.
  8. Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs): In order to stop the large import of gold in India due to high demand, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launched SGBs to encourage people to hold gold in paper format. Currently, it is one of the best ways to hold gold since there is no expense ratio, and SGBs pay 2.5% interest annually.[6] On maturity, the amount equal to market value of gold in India is paid out, as published by India Bullion and Jewellers Association.
  9. Equity Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS): With a lock-in period of 3 years this scheme offers tax deduction of up to Rs 1,50,000 under section 80C.[7] However, investments must be held in a qualified closed ended fund.

Index funds in India

Benchmarks and underlying securities

As per the direction of Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Association of Mutual Funds of India (AMFI) classifies all listed stocks in India into large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap once every six months. The categorisation is as below in the decreasing order of market cap:

  1. Large-cap: Stocks ranked 1 to 100
  2. Mid-cap: Stocks ranked 101 to 250
  3. Small-cap: Stocks ranked 251 and below.

The two major stock exchanges in India are National Stock Exchange (NSE) and Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Both own subsidiaries that provide benchmarks that mutual funds track. BSE Sensex and Nifty 50 are oldest and most popular equity benchmarks but over time broader benchmarks have been introduced.

Large-Cap Benchmarks

  1. BSE Sensex: Constituting 30 largest and most liquid stocks in terms of free-float market capitalisation listed on BSE.
  2. BSE Sensex 50/Nifty 50: Constituting 50 largest stocks in terms of free-float market capitalisation listed on BSE/NSE.
  3. BSE Sensex Next 50/ Nifty Next 50: Constituting next 50 (rank 51-100) largest stocks in terms of free-float market capitalisation listed on BSE/NSE.
  4. BSE 100/Nifty 100: Total of Sensex 50/Nifty 50 and Sensex Next 50/Nifty Next 50 benchmarks.

Large-cap space is where passive investment is gaining popularity.

Mid-Cap Benchmarks

BSE MidCap, BSE 150 MidCap, Nifty MidCap 50, Nifty MidCap 100, Nifty MidCap 150:

There are only a few Mid-cap ETFs available in India currently.

Small-Cap Benchmarks

BSE SmallCap,BSE 250 SmallCap, Nifty SmallCap 50, Nifty SmallCap 100, Nifty SmallCap 150

Currently there is only one Small-cap index fund (no ETFs) available in India.

Multi-Cap Benchmarks

BSE 500/NSE 500: These are broadest equity benchmark available in India and are sum total of BSE 100/NSE 100, BSE 150 Midcap/NSE Midcap 150 and BSE 250 SmallCap/Nifty SmallCap 250.

Stock index funds

Currently, index mutual funds (excluding ETFs) are available in India only for large-cap indices. Most index funds benchmark to Sensex, Nifty 50 or Nifty Next 50. Some of the good options are:

Fund Expense ratio Benchmark
HDFC Index Fund Nifty 50 Plan - Direct 0.10% Nifty 50
UTI Nifty Index Fund - Direct 0.10% Nifty 50
UTI Nifty Next 50 Index Fund - Direct 0.27% Nifty Next 50
ICICI Prudential Nifty Next 50 Index Fund - Direct 0.39% Nifty Next 50

Stock ETFs

Stock ETFs is the most active area for passive investments in India today with almost all AMCs coming out with ETF products. Some ETFs attractive for buy-and-hold investors are listed below:

Large-cap ETFs
Fund Expense ratio
ICICI Prudential Nifty ETF 0.05%
HDFC Nifty 50 ETF 0.05%
Nippon India ETF Nifty BeES 0.05%
SBI ETF Nifty 50 0.07%
Nippon India ETF Junior BeES 0.15%
Mid-cap ETFs
Fund Expense ratio
Motilal Oswal Midcap 100 ETF 0.20%
Motilal Oswal M50 ETF 0.15%
Multi-cap ETFs
Fund Expense ratio
ICICI Prudential S&P BSE 500 ETF 0.29%

Bond index funds and ETFs

Since the Indian bond market is dominated by gilt securities, the only index funds are based around Gilts of 10-year maturity. Some of the available index funds are:

Fund Expense ratio Benchmark
ICICI Prudential Constant Maturity Gilt Fund 0.17% CRISIL 10-Year Gilt
SBI Magnum Constant Maturity Fund 0.33% CRISIL 10-Year Gilt
DSP 10Y G-Sec Fund 0.25% CRISIL 10-Year Gilt

The only available ETFs are:

Fund Expense ratio Benchmark
Reliance ETF Long Term Gilt 0.04% NIFTY 8-13 yr G-Sec Index
SBI ETF 10 Year Gilt 0.14% NIFTY 10 yr G-Sec Index
LIC MF G-Sec Long Term ETF 0.26% NIFTY 8-13 yr G-Sec Index

Taxation

Investment in equity and equity-oriented mutual funds and ETFs for more than 1 year qualifies for long-term taxation, while the same time for debt-oriented mutual funds is 3 years.[citation needed] Below are the tax rates for these:

  1. Equity mutual fund short-term capital gain: 15% plus surcharges
  2. Equity mutual fund long-term capital gain: 10% (exempted up to a gain amount of Rs 1,00,000 per year)
  3. Debt mutual fund short-term capital gain: Marginal tax rate of the individual
  4. Debt mutual fund long-term capital gain: 20% with indexation, plus surcharges

Some strategies for tax efficiency:

  1. Since there is no wash-sale rule in India and equity mutual fund capital gains attract no tax up to a gain of Rs 1,00,000 per year,[citation needed] it is advised to sell and immediately buy equity funds to increase cost basis. In other words, gains up to Rs 1,00,000 should be booked every year. This ensures utilisation of exempted limit for the year.
  2. Tax loss harvesting has limited use. Capital losses can only be offset against capital gains and not against any other income source. Long-term loss can only be offset against long-term gain while short-term loss can be offset against either short-term gain or long-term gain. Losses can be carried forward up to a maximum of 8 years.
  3. A point to be noted is that International equity mutual funds are treated as debt-oriented mutual funds for taxation purpose, i.e., they qualify for long term capital gains only after 3 years and are taxed at 20% with indexation.

Brokerages

The largest broker by number of clients in India is Zerodha and is ideal for buy-and-hold investors. It charges zero brokerage for equity delivery and hence charges no brokerage on buying or selling ETFs (Rs 20 brokerage for intra-day trades). It charges Rs 300 per year as account maintenance fees. Largest expense borne by investors is Securities Transaction Tax (STT) which is charged at 0.1% of traded amount.

Other brokers include ShareKhan and other full-service brokers like ICICI Securities, HDFC Securities etc.

Investing in foreign assets

There are two ways of investing in foreign assets. One is through Indian mutual funds (of which you can choose pure foreign equity funds which are taxed as debt funds or hybrid funds having 65% Indian Equities 35% Foreign Equities which are taxed as an Indian equity fund), and the other is by investing using a foreign brokerage account like Interactive Brokers.

Investing using Indian mutual funds

Debt Fund Taxation:

  1. Motilal Oswal S&P 500
  2. Motilal Oswal Nasdaq 100 Exchange Traded Fund
  3. Nippon India Multi Asset Fund
  4. Motilal Oswal Multi Asset Fund

Others can be found using the ValueResearch International Search.

Equity Taxation (Foreign Stocks not Exceeding 35% of Fund Portfolio):

  1. Aditya Birla SL International Equity Fund Plan B (24.58% Exposure November 2020)
  2. Axis ESG Equity Fund (25.26% Exposure November 2020)
  3. Templeton India Equity Income Fund (20.33% Exposure November 2020, Emerging Markets Only)
  4. Parag Parikh Long Term Equity Fund (28.79% Exposure November 2020)
  5. Axis Growth Opp Fund (24.45% Exposure November 2020)
  6. Aditya Birla SL Dividend Yield Fund (9.65% Exposure November 2020)
  7. SBI Focused Equity Fund (9.41% Exposure November 2020)
  8. IDFC Multi Cap Fund (2.55% Exposure November 2020)
  9. SBI Magnum Global Fund (2.27% Exposure November 2020)
  10. ICICI Pru MNC Fund (8.22% Exposure October 2020)
  11. Kotak Pioneer Fund (18.93% Exposure invested in "Signature Global Technology Corporate Class Fund -994" November 2020)
  12. DSP Value Fund (25% Exposure Dec 2020)
  13. Axis Special Situations Fund
  14. Principal Large Cap Fund (12.15% Exposure November 2020)

Sector:

  1. Franklin India Technology Fund (24.92% of which 8.58% is invested in Franklin Technology Fund,Class I (Acc))
  2. DSP Natural Res & New Energy Fund (25.69% Exposure of which 15.5% is invested in BlackRock Global Funds- Sustainable Energy Fund (Class I2 USD Shares) and the remaining 10.19% is invested in BGF - World Energy Fund (Class I2 USD Shares))
  3. DSP Healthcare Fund (8.95% Exposure November 30,2020)
  4. SBI Technology Opp Fund (8.17% Exposure November 30,2020)
  5. Aditya Birla SL Digital India Fund (4.47% Exposure November 30 2020)
  6. Edelweiss MSCI India Domestic & World Healthcare 45 Index Fund (30% Exposure)

Out of these 65/35 funds only one fund, Parag Parikh Long Term Equity, uses currency hedging and as a result earns 5-6% returns due to inflation and interest rate differences between the USA (country in which the fund invests its majority of foreign assets) and India.

Investing using overseas mutual funds or ETFs

If investing using overseas mutual funds or ETFs -- that is, ETFs listed in a foreign stock exchange like NYSE, LSE, or NASDAQ, and held with brokers such as Charles Schwab, Interactive Brokers, Vested Finance -- then the following details, created by Redditor '4thinker_india',[8] need to be taken into account.

Part A: Reporting of foreign assets and income

  1. You must fill out more detailed IT returns: You cannot use Saral ITR form if you hold any foreign assets (even if those are acquired by default, such as via company stock awards or 401k when you were an NRI.) If you possess any foreign holdings, including bank accounts or stocks or real estate or just cash in foreign brokerage accounts, you are required to fill out FA schedule (FSI only if you want to claim foreign tax credit) of ITR 2/ ITR 3 or others as applicable.
    1. This is true even if you have no other income to disclose, or even if your taxable income is below the tax limit!
    2. Even if you have had no foreign transactions during the year and only passively held any foreign assets, you must fill up FA schedule.
  2. Disclose foreign income including dividends: You have to fill out the FSI schedule to show transactions resulting in Income from Foreign Sources, and ensure that this income is also included in your total income computation.
    1. You have to include the Foreign Dividend income in OS schedule under "Income from Other Sources - Dividends".
      This is applicable even if you hold stocks with automatic dividend reinvestment option, or even if you don't actually receive the dividend in your Indian bank accounts and it stays with the broker as cash balance or you transfer it to your overseas bank account!
    2. You have to reconcile all your transactions to Indian financial year & accounting period (Apr 1 – March 31) and ensure that you do have all the statements to back up those transactions.
  3. While reporting your foreign holdings and transactions, you can use the RBI Reference Rate. There are rules on how to convert the foreign transactions into INR. IT Department demands that you use the previous month-end’s rates, and not the rates as per your actual transaction date.

Part B: Reporting of foreign taxes paid or withheld and claiming tax relief for these

  1. Report your tax relief claim: You need to fill out Form 67 that details the foreign transactions (dividends), US IRS withholdings etc. and also provide supporting documents (such as 1042-S from your broker, as well as any broker statements.) The form should ideally be submitted before you file your ITR for the given assessment year.
    1. This form can be filled out online (in the incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in portal after you log in) and can be submitted online along with proofs, since these past few years. You do get an acknowledgement with a reference number.
  2. Claim tax relief in ITR for any foreign taxes paid: You need to fill out schedule TR of ITR for any tax relief you are claiming. (In Excel utility, TR & FA are on the same page.)
    1. You can claim tax relief under section 90 or 90A or 91, depending upon whether DTAA exists with that country or not.
    2. In FA schedule, you have to also mention the article of DTAA under which tax relief is claimed.
    3. As an example: Looking at the case of US, where IRS withholdings are at the rate of 25%: Since OS gets added in your income computation and thus overall tax computation, and since TR gets included in your tax computation as a credit similar to Indian TDS, you would effectively be paying the 5% or so of difference to Indian ITD, or taking some money back if you are in lower than 25% tax brackets.)
      1. In case of US, you can claim TR under section 90, articles 10 & 25.
    4. All the steps above would ensure that your foreign assets are reported in ITR, your foreign income is included in your income computation and your withheld foreign taxes are accounted for in your tax computation.

Part C: In practice

This is where the things get murkier.

  1. It seems that presently, there is little information exchange available between US IRS and Indian ITD, at least as far as small tax payers are concerned. Even if there is info exchange, maybe ITD pays only limited attention to entire set of data. Therefore, CPC is not in a position to validate the foreign taxes paid to IRS.
    1. This, even though you ensure that your foreign broker has your Indian PAN recorded with him and he mentions the same in 1042-S form.[note 2]
  2. As a result, CPC simply expresses its inability to process any ITR that has its TR schedule filled out and just transfers it to your Jurisdictional AO, who can happily sit on your ITR for years without processing it. (Or sometimes, he processes the ITR without giving any Foreign Tax relief, which in turn may result in a tax demand.)
  3. In effect, you are never certain if rest of the sections of your ITR are in order, and you are not sure if you would really be given foreign tax credit, and you're not sure when you will be issued any refunds due.

Part D: Repercussions of non-compliance

Failure to report your foreign assets or income invites penal action under Black Money Act 2015.

  1. Undisclosed foreign income and asset will be taxed at a flat rate of 30 percent.
  2. Concealment of income and assets and evasion of tax in relation to foreign assets will be liable for prosecution with punishment of rigorous imprisonment up to 10 years.
  3. Penalty for concealment of income and assets to be levied at 300 percent of the tax sought to be evaded.
  4. Penalty of Rs 10,00,000 may be levied on non-filing of tax return or filing of tax return with inadequate disclosure of foreign assets.

Notes

  1. The Indian numbering system groups digits into powers of one hundred, except for the first thousand. 1,00,000 (one hundred thousand) is a lakh, and 1,00,00,000 (ten million) is a crore. For more, see: "Indian numbering system". Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_numbering_system. Retrieved September 4, 2020.
  2. Form 1042-S is the US-equivalent of Form 16-A that we get in India from Banks as TDS statement.

References

External links