Playing the stock market used to be the preserve of financial gurus, elites and insiders with dealers in red courts shouting prices on the floor of a dingy room. The loudest dealer would catch the eye of the guy scribbling on the price board.
Fast forward to the present Automated Trading System (ATS), where digital central clearance and settlement unit and electronic instruments have replaced the hard copy share certificates. Today’s trading has moved from the computer terminals and e-boards on the floor of the bourse and back-office systems of a stock brokerage firm to the mobile phone. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, all one needs is to have a central depository (CD) account, download the new enhanced NSE App on IOS https://bit.ly/nseioske and play store https://bit.ly/nseandroid to trade and invest on the go!
The NSE provides real-time data on listed debt securities, listed equities, ticker on a company’s website, equity indices and the FTSE NSE Bond Index. But even with vast IT advances and the entry of more discerning and more sophisticated investors, the basic rules of playing the stock market remain the same.
“There are a number of factors to consider when choosing companies to invest in,” says Ms Bansri Pattni, Corporate Finance Manager at the NSE. “Amongst them is the long term vision of the company and growth plans, profitability track record, management of the company and its stability of the same.”
The investor risk profiles also plays a role in deciding which counters to enter.
Bansri Pattni advises new traders to log in to the NSE’s Investing Tuesdays’ sessions to get more insights on this.
According to Luke Ombara, Director, Regulatory Policy and Strategy, at the Capital Markets Authority, while the pandemic has brought down the level of activity at stock market, the regulator has devised pandemic-beating strategies.
“To make the market more vibrant the CMA in consultation with industry participants has unveiled a short term capital markets recovery strategy. Focus is on enhancing liquidity (securities lending and borrowing and market making); leveraging technology (use of apps) to enhance access to capital markets and services (eg NSE Portal) at the primary and secondary levels,” said Ombara.
He disclosed that CMA is introducing a variety of new products such as real estate investment trusts, fintechs as well as easing some disclosure requirements. According to Pattni, a number of counters have been resilient to the pandemic and the top 5 counters have more or else retained their positions through this period as well.
She advises investors to get in touch with their brokers to guide them further on specific counter performances and where to invest their money. Further to that, the NSE Mobile App also provides a lot of information on the market to guide decisions.