Tuesday, December 26, 2006

A new Beginning

Dear Friends, we have now started earning money and saving for the future is part of earning a living. Our wants are unlimited and the means to satisfy them are limited.
But, good financial planning can make our life easy. Financial planning not only helps maximise the power of money, but also saves us from shocks and crises when we need the money not to satisy our want but need.
I would like to share with some of my knowledge and learnings which I have gained through my passion for the financial markets. I am starting a series with the first article dealing with investment options.


Definition: Part of the income set aside today to create higher value/purchasing power tomorrow.

Investment options:
1. Debt:
a) An investment instrument that gives non-negative returns.
b) Generally safer with low-moderate returns.
c) Available instruments:
i. National Saving Certificates (Post Office)
ii. Public and Employee provident funds
iii. Bank Fixed Deposits.
iv. Government and corporate Bonds (direct purchase)
v. Debt mutual funds (indirect bond purchase)
d) What returns may be expected?
Historically, till about 1998 (since socialist eras) interest rates were about 15-18%. Then came the phase of low interest rates: 8-9 %. Again, the interest rates have started moving upwards closer to 10%.
e) The first three instruments need very less deliberation from the investor, though investment in other debt instruments requires knowledge.
2. Equity:
Definition: Direct or indirect ownership stake in a company.
a) The chances of returns are in both directions ie positive as well as negative.
b) Equities are riskier and need careful active investment.
c) Higher the risk taken, higher the potential (not actual) returns.
d) What returns may be expected?
In the last 5 years ie since Jan 2002, top mutual funds have returned 50% annually ie Rs. 100 would have become Rs. 760.
But, there are market crashes which could wipe out the entire money eg the 2001 tech bubble where lot of companies lost all their value. The recent May 2006 crash where lot of companies lost 60-70% share price. One can take the examples of the 1929 or the 1969 US market crash. Thus, it also depends on the shares that one purchases.
There are phases in the stock markets, where the prices go nowhere eg Indian markets were in the 3000-4000 range between 2001 and 2003.
3. Bullion (Gold, Silver):
a) Jewelery is not an investment but an adornment.
b) Gold/silver having very less correlation to the stock markets is used to spread the risk of the portfolio.
c) Returns are generally low and it is used as a hedge against downslide.
4. Enterprising Assets (Timber, Commodities, Real Estate):
a) The house you stay in (single house) is not an investment, but a necessity.
b) Buying these assets to be considered to diversify your investments.
c) What returns may be expected?
Since 1960 till 2000, the best performing asset has been timber with 6% annualized returns.

Summary Matrix

Investment Risk Potential Return Volatility Liquidity
Debt Low-moderat e Low-moderate Low-moderate Low-moderate
Equity Moderate-high Moderate-high Moderate-high High
Bullion Low-moderate Low-moderate Low-moderate Moderate-high


1. Investments are made to satisfy needs which may range from funding education (of self or children), marriage, house/car purchase, retirement corpus. Hence, an investor must start with a well defined need (ie set a target).
2. The different needs are to be satisfied at different times and hence the investment time period is different. This provides a guideline. For example, if you have to purchase a house in the next 3 months, you won't park those funds in equity as if the stock prices decrease, you will not be able to buy the house.
3. The investor should decide her risk-tolerance capacity ie who are her dependents and how badly she requires the invested money. If the investor has dependents (old parents, spouse/children who have to be supported) she cannot take too much risk.
4. The investor should then assess her risk taking capability ie how would she feel if her money decreases by 20% in 1 month: will she panic?

5. Thus, depending on the need (or aim), time, risk tolerance capacity, a strategic plan must be prepared to allocate the available funds for investment into the various asset classes. The risk-return (likely) scenarios of asset classes differ ( also with time) and the investment plan may be effectively implemented by investing fractional parts in the various asset classes.
6. A low-risk portfolio would consist more of debt than of equity and a more aggressive one the exact opposite.
7. The overall returns do not depend so much on the individual instruments (20%) as on asset allocation (80%). Thus, asset allocation is the key to achieve sustainable returns and to manage risk.

1. Asset: Something which you would be proud of passing to the next generation
2. Hedge: Strategy used to minimise the impact of a risk
3. Liquidity: Ease of converting the asset to cash.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Confessions of a sinner

You may consider this as some kind of a postscript to my 'Ab toh Zinda Hoon' blog-entry.
After travelling in the company bus for the past couple of months, I now had to travel in train again on Saturday. Thinking that the trains would be relatively empty, I chose this mode of transport over road. But, then my calculations had gone wrong and I could clearly see that I would remain standing on Kandivli station for an hour before I could board any train.
A thought suddenly struck me, why not travel in 1st class till Malad and catch the starting train at 8.35 am? I would be travelling in 1st class for just one stopover and then get back to 2nd class. I don't know whether it was a big sin travelling in the compartment I was not entitled to. My circumstances dictated my actions. Can't decide who the bigger sinner is; me or the railway planning authorities who forced me to do such a thing?
Is there anything like right or wrong? Or the fact that I ensured because of my travelling 1st class, I didn't put anybody in inconvenience. (I was standing at the door without occupying anybody alse's place)

Sunday, July 16, 2006


What did I do in the four years of engineering- study, study and study?
Well yes, without getting the marks. But, thats not what I value. I made some great friends. Sitting late in the evening in the Gymkhana........that was bliss.
I made friends for life. And this I realise from a few weeks of parting. They will abuse, insult, make jokes about you, make u believe they have long gone past you, but they are the ones who will always remember you and be there for you.

Guys my heart goes out to you.

But, do remember life is very uncertain, anything can happen and thus please cherish each and every moment that you get. Life is not a input-output linear algebraic equation, its Fourier series, so enjoy life and be prepared to bear the burden of duties.

Monday, July 03, 2006

The pic says it all

And for those who think my blog is dead, its dormant through all the churnings of the past few weeks. It will be back....

Sunday, May 21, 2006


IST 8.00pm, 20-05-2006, West Indies comes into bat. Within two overs, Gayle and Morton disappear. Lara comes into bat at score 1 with 2 wickets down. I am very happy, will get to see Lara batting for a long time.
IST 8.45pm, Lara out to a loose shot. He as well as me-totally frust. I totally lose hope from the match, though I keep track of the score as Sarwan is still in there.

Next day morning, I just check the results out of curiosity and I see a jubilant Bravo on cricinfo.
Moral: Never lose hope, try and keep trying even if the circumstances are totally against you. And yes, don't undermine the West Indies and especially Lara.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Ab to Zinda Hoo (Kaise?)

What do you think? The freedom to make a decision is actually a boon or a pain?
Do you want to take all your decisions yourself or let someone better suited take it for you. If you are a liberal, you will pitch in for the first choice but do not dismiss the second. Because if you take decisions wihtout due considerations or those which you are not qualified to take, it may result in any consequence.

Today, I was standing on platform no.2, Kandivli. A local train came and stopped on platform 4. Apparently, somebody had pulled the chain and it was an unscheduled stop. The time to take a decision had come, and I ran to platform 4. Nobody was willing to take me inside the train and I had to remain hanging on the door.
Malad came and I started realising my mistake. My hands became numb and my legs started shaking half-way thruogh to Goregaon. It didn't take great intelligence to guess the future. But, I requested the passengers, told them my condiiton and they did help me somehow get in and I was saved. My initial assesment that there was space inside the train for one person was right but I overestimated my abilities of hanging on the doors.

A bad decision was just saved saved from becoming the last.

Monday, May 08, 2006

What I saw in my friends.

I missed Varun's name when I first published this post. He was an obviuos choice for inclusion in the post and that is the exact reason why I missed writing about him. I would not be writing anything about him in this post. He has been the inspiration for me to start and continue writing the blog.

1. Yogesh Tarate: Has anybody seen this guy not smiling? Whatever the situation, whatever the challenge: this guy is always happy to be there at that moment. He taught me to look forward to life and face it with optimism.
2. Vidyadhar Bhise: “Nothing is impossible. Tension nahi hai, shyam tak ho jayega.” How to believe in yourself and especially your convictions is worth learning from this guy.
3. Rohit Bhute: Observing this guy will tell you how to approach technology and English language. This person has a sharp intellect, logical and clear thinking.
4. Pramod Gupta: The most honest and desirable friend one can have. He will never fail your trust and you can expect him to be always there for you. He also carries out his duties with utmost reverence. He is my guru-this is the guy who introduced me to the world of carom.
5. Vikas Dixit: Very quick witted: can think on his toes. He has a very good presence of mind. Has a good, cultured personality. Will die for a friend, but will never desert him. Learn friendship from him. One thing is for sure, you will enjoy his company-very humorous.
6. Aditya Save: Has immense potential to do hard work. Exactly when you think he can’t beyond this point, he overcomes all the barriers and surpasses your imagination.
7. Bhupendra Amodekar: I have always felt at home in his company. If you want to learn how to build and maintain a network of friends, learn this art from Dahisar Mania and especially its leader-Bhupi.
8. Anwesh Das: How to bare the brunt even though you don’t deserve such treatment and still come out of the situation smiling and ever stronger. He is very intelligent and multi-talented.
9. Sridhar Narayanan: If anybody can give competition to Save, he is that person. I am trying to solve the puzzle as to how this guy manages to do so many things at the time.
10. Hrishikesh Thite: How this man survives to live another day is a mystery to me. He would eat and drink just seconds before he would die exhausted but won’t do the same earlier as it was not required so early. He does all the work as late as possible (should have been born in Japan) but still manages to do the best job. One more thing, has excellent contacts, especially his saasu ani mavshi.
11. Swapnil Jadhav: This person does his job without bothering about the numerous jokers around him. Before you prepare to take guard, he is past the finishing line.
12. Nirbhay Singhal: This guy amazes with his energy and enthusiasm and an always ready attitude. He is the right person when you need adventurism and courage. Also, he is true to his name; absolutely nidar.
13. Piyush Shah: Just one sentence; He is the Karna of our class-an embodiment of all the qualities mentioned above.

What Rs. 50,000 crores can do!

Anyone of the following things can be done with that kind of money.
• 10 IITs.
• 10 IIMs
• 10,000 primary schools assuming 5 crore capital investment per school. Each
school would teach at least 1000 students, thus the money would provide
education to 10 million children.
• Metro rail for Mumbai with a carrying capacity of 4 million per day.
• Slum rehabilitation: Assuming Rs. 1million per house, homes for 0.5 million
• Employment guarantee: Assuming minimum wage of Rs. 100 per day for 200
days in a year, employment can be provided to 2.5 million people.
• 10 million computers with broadband connectivity for 1 year.
• CNG distribution infrastructure for at least 5 cities of the size of Mumbai.
• Sewage treatment (100%) for all the waste generated by Mumbai.
• Assuming Rs. 1 million per public toilet ( with proper maintenance and sewage
disposal) catering to 100 people per day, 0.5 million toilets can be built which
would service 50 million people (equivalent to 3 Mumbais).

Just imagine what difference each of the above measures would make to the Indian
society and economy.

But, you must be wondering from where to get the Rs. 50,000 crore. Simple: stop giving subsidies on petrol, diesel, LPG and kerosene and that kind of money will be available per year.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Waiting for the day

Its 3rd May and less than a month to go for the last exam of Engineering to get over.
I a dying for this. The 8th Sem has given me quite bad experiences and I am in a mood to forget SP soon. But, in SPCE I also has a lot of memories and have made a lot of friends. I am planning to write a post similar the awards posts started by Varun, bhise, bhute. Hope u people will look forward for the same.
For the last few weeks since my incepttion into Bhute's team my life seems to have taken the turn that was written by Bhute and I totally into role playing. I have truly been roughed up as a random variable. But, guys Bhute dude has formed his teams of the right persons and I am fit for this rough job.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

magic in pipeline?

slept yesterday night at 2.30 am (was having a long chat with my father) and got up at 6.30 just to wake up to wet outfield and a delayed start to the West Indies Vs New Zeland Test. Play started and Lara came into bat in half an hour. watched Lara with anticipation and apprehension

Observations: lara had changed his style. His bat usually kisses the ground just before the bowler delivers the ball. Now it was hanging in the air. Maybe he wanted to be sure of not being late playing the ball. He was not having the extravagant "run" towards his off stump thus in the process exposing his leg stump. As a result he was able to leave deliveries that were much closer to his body.
Where do u see the world's leading run scorer working so hard and re-inventing himself after playing 15 years at the international level. Thats the grit, determination, flexibility and desire of Lara.
I get a feeling that a big inning is in the making. If not for the big score, one should see Lara bat for the patience, perseverance and determination to succeed whatever the odds that is reflected from his face and for the humility and honesty that he epitomises.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

End of Lara?

of late Lara has failed to gather runs. He has failed in 4 consecutive innings against the New Zelanders and in his previous tuor to Australia he had only one score out of six to show.
Is Lara past his time? Has the responsibility to single handedly carry the mantle of West Indian batting weighed him down? Or is it one of the slumps which will be overcomed by lara's characteristic determination and charisma.
Only time will tell-and Lara is trying very hard to woo the time on his side. He has actually lost substantial weight in the last 6 months.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Reporting from IIMA

Guys, I am in IIMA and I tell you this is a fabulous place.
Anyone from SPCE will immediately be awed by the hostel itself leave alone the other parts.
Though, I wonder at the absence of any security(nobody says anything wherever you go) once you enter the campus, especially after all the blasts occuring and India rapidly turning into an Israel.
I will be having my interview tomorrow for the FPM programme.
Looking forward to playing a few games (basket ball,badminton etc) in the meantime.
The place looks very empty and serene though a lot of activity is going inside its belly.

About the comment which akshat has left.
Go and read the "Hadis: religious faith or fanaticism" by Ram Swarup at
You may also read other books like:
1. what happened to Hindu temples
2. The Calcutta Quran petition.

Its not just a case of clerics instigating the uneducated. It is also in the philosophy and history of Islam that one observes so much violence and intolerance in the Islamic world (not just India and not just a couple of years or decades).
Go and read about the concept of Darul-Islam.

PS: If you want a brief summary of the above books/issues, mail me I will write to you

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Muslim phenomenon

Reports that we read in the newspaper.
2 killed in Lucknow during anti-Bush protests.
Protesters forced shopkeepers to shut shops which sparked off the fighting.
Police opened fire on mob when they expoded bombs and fired with pistols.

As a matter of fact-the prophet cartoons were never made/endorsed/published in USA.
So, don't the Muslims think/enquire before going on mass protests?
What is this way of protesting-exploding bombs? A man was shown firing in the air during the protests on NDTV. Everything starts and ends with violence-that too uninvitied and unnecessary?

Another news story that has become common in India- bomb expoded killing these many at this place (latest bus stand of Kozikode). India is becoming another Israel. Unless drastic measures are taken to contain the Muslims both at political/ideological and the security level, India is going to face a doom.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

fida on hussain

We all have heard, read and may have even witnessed the violent protests by Muslims all over the world. Though I would be commenting on them in my next post, I would like to state some facts and awaken some dormant people.

Maqbul Fida Hussain-the great Indian painter whi was mad after Madhuri Dixit had recently painted a nude painting of Bharat mata. Why are Hindus protesting against it?
Their religious feelings are hurt, why? Goddess is a concept only in Hindu relogion. Muslims don't worship anyone other than Allah. Hence they also refuse to sing Vande Mataram.
Hussain'spology doesn't count because he had painted Hindu gods nude a decade ago-Hanuman, Sita, Saraswati, Ganga, Yamuna etc. Does anybody protest that? What are the Hindus doing?

For the freedom loving people, why doesn;t he draw nuse pictures of Prophet Muhammad's daughter or the Prophet having sex with his 81 wives and innumerable concubines?
Why does he find only Hindu Gods?

To those people who prefer to be secular Hindus- what will happen to your own religion if u keep shut and accept all insults and onslaughts. Secularism is not non-religiosness.
I am putting up one of the nude paintings drawn by MF-this is just to reinforce my point and for those who might think that I have cooked up an issue.
The picture has been taken from MF's own website.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Pro Nitght JAL

A was a rocking concert was presented by the Pakistani band Jal. SPCE and Mumbai will remeber the concert for a lot of days to come.
The evening started with a stampede to enter the Bhavan's ground. But all the dhakka bukki was tolerated because of the rocking performance from the band. Though people like me don't know much about music, I could easily guess that the band had the potential. On the face of it the style of all teh songs was similar, but the guitarist made the day playing different tunes for the same song.
People like Varun, Dani was in a trance and not in their senses to do anything ither than standing stunned and listen. People like me, manjrekar, Mallu, Vikas, Bhavesh and others were dancing to the end of our physical capabilities.
There was a slight glitch though. The calls of Hindustan zindabad were a little out of context and to some extent uncalled for. But, I must say we all enjoyed the Jhin jin Jhi Jhin Jhi jhin jhin dance (just as Varun enjoys the OAD dance.)

The above pic is dedicated to Vikas. Amrita looks very pretty in the pic though some work seems to have been done on her complexion

Monday, February 13, 2006

Shabri Kumbh

In India 4 kumbh melas are organised at Nashik, Haridwar, Allahbad and Ujjain once in 12 years. These kumbh melas have a special religious significance and are attented by aprroximatelly 2 crore people over a period of 1 month.
A 5th Kumbh Mela has been initiated from this year named as SHABRI KUMBH MELA in the Dang district of Gujarat which is believed to be the famous Dandakaranya of the Ramayan era. Shabri was the great Ram bhakt who fed Ram with jhoote ber so that she could ascetain whether what he ate were the sweetest. The kumbh has a special significance for the tribals and Hindu society as a whole.
The main purpose of the mela was to awaken and spread awareness among the Hindus about the conversions carried out by the Cristians. Some statistics floated in the newspapers reveal that 5% of the population of Dang district (92% tribal) is christian. Christians constitute 0.5% of the total population of Gujarat. But the real extent of Christian penetration and conversion can be guaged from the fact that when we enter the District HQ at AHWA, we don't see the administration buildings but the big church that stands beside the administrative buildings.
One may try to downplay the issue of conversions but all the no-Hindu dominated regions of India have a tendency of secession.
There were 30% Hindus is pre-partition East Bengal, today there are less than7%.There were approx 25% Hindus in Pakistan before partition, today there are not even 1%.

Today we have talk of reservations in the army on the lines of religion as if parity of numbers in the army/police based on communal lines ensures safety of citizens.
We have Muslims worshipping at the Saraswati Mandir in BHOJSHALA (Madhya Pradesh) built by Raja BHOJ and the media accusing Hindus of aggression.
So, Indians and Hindus please become aware of the demography of India and the difference between Hindu religion and other monotheistic religions and save your future generations.

After the heavy handed propaganda, enjoy the pic. I am back to Katrina as demanded by the most avid appreciator of the pictures.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The engineers

I would like to start elaborating the different motivations and ideations of the slang used in SPCE. I think varun has gone through the exercise but I would try and be more candid and condescending

Today is the day of the engineers.
Who is an engineer?

There are many among us who joined engineering because of our marks and because we thought this would be the right line. But, after year or two realised that we are no good at the technical nittie-gritties. So what happens when one suddenly realises that the one thing he has been hoping and working for is not his? The person starts finding recluse in something which he enjoys and finds a certain peace in being. This something may be drinking, gymkhana, self mockery, derisioning others, collecting pictures of models etc.
So, the "Hum bhi hai Josh main" comes in. So what if I faint before the external examiner? I am the tiger in the gymkhana. The engineers make their own turf and they are the kings there. It is the only place where they get respect and attention and a feeling of self-worth. The engineers are happy that there is at least one thing on which they have a hang and to guard it they give everything they have.
Such are engineers and each of us is an engineer to some or the other extent.

Writing off the post from the Engineer of SPCE........

PS: There was bhari demand from our very own pic collector to post a pic.
So here is a former Miss India finalist (1997). She is "marathi manoos jaga ho: stuff.

I have changed the pic on popular demand and if u people still don't like it... then do whatever u would have advised me to do if our roles were interchanged

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

pic post

My friend says that posting a picture is trivialising the power of a blog, but he doesn't understand that posting a pic is the motivation behing the very post. Without the pic, the words don't come. This pic is dedicated to the one who believes in the same ideology. So enjoy Takia, but just remember door se, no masti. Leave all the other feelings for me.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Tere ghar mein der hai andher nahi

After attempting a marathon this year and fainting just a few meters before the finish line, I come to know now that after all the finish line I was looking at is not the only one in the run. I was still good enough for the long race.

Decryption- Got 96.53 percentile in CAT 2005, no calls from any of the IIMs.
Little chance of getting calls from other good institutes.
But, bingo! I have applied for the Fellow Programme in management and I get call from IIM C. So now I get up, refresh myself and start preparation for the ultimate marathon.

Now time for the babe, katrina is a bomb and her latest picture with Akki Baba is going to rock. I just need some of u friends to come with me so that I don't go wild.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Less controvercial post (for a change)

Now-a-days most of my conversations turn into altercations and I am in a firefighting position trying to heckle out a compromise. That Emraan always sees in the opposite direction. But, thats good, I am learning deliberation and negotiation.
Taking that topic apart, I was wondering whether I would be able to keep commitments.
But I am determined and come what may amey will succeed.
I am going to Aurangabad and will write a post only on my return in the weekend. Hope u people would have enjoyed the double RD (drives) lecture on Thursday at 9. ( I am not confirming that it will take place though RD will be more than happy.)

About this girl Ayesha Takia, she is the cutest actress in Bollywood, if u don't like her face, u know what to look for. But, the traditional Indian definition of beauty applied to her is more than enough to mesmerise a guy. And she is our age, we can aank utha ke dekh at her.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

To Narak and Back

This is a story of an innocent young adult named Kunal. He studies in a famous engineering college and is doing his BE project in a reputed company. His project partner is a guy called Emraan.
One day, they need to purchase a few electronic components. So, the two decide to go to Lamington Road: a place in Mumbai famous for the availability of electronic products and many other services. The two purchase the required items and Emraan suggests that they also get the switch board from the same area on which to mount the electronic components. Kunal unsuspectingly agrees to this and to get the box drilled follows Emraan who leads the way.
Kunal is fond of travelling and hence is looking at the buildings, shops, restaurants and the people around. Slowly a pattern starts emerging. He can’t read the sign boards on the shops-the script is unknown to him. Then, he notices that the people around don’t look the same as he is used to see in his 20 year sojourn on earth. He doesn’t care much though. He moves ahead behind Emraan. But, soon enough he realises that he is in a foreign land equipped only with his tongue which can make compliant noises. He is completely at the mercy of Emraan and the latter behaves as if he is well aware of this. Emraan is a changed person and he is no longer the sombre, good natured, humble person. Kunal tries hard not to get frightened and least of all to show it on his face. He knows that behaving like a dumb dog is his only chance of ret urning to his family-dead or alive.
Kunal is lucky; this is just a trailer shown by Emraan to him. They get the work of drilling the plastic box done from a slightly familiar looking man. Kunal is relieved to see a familiar face though he is not reassured on seeing him-only the face is like the others-everything else might be the same. After returning home, Kunal is disturbed but, he has learnt his lessons and immediately goes to the community gathering, for the first time, held in his locality by some elders.