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Five ways to invest in a mutual fund
Rachna C
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October 20, 2005

How do I buy the units of a fund?" someone asked me the other day. This query was followed by a mail from a reader who wanted to know if he had to buy mutual fund units from the stock market.

For all of you who are plagued with similar questions, here is the answer.

We have listed five ways in which you can buy your fund units.

1. Get in touch with the Asset Management Company

The first step is to track the AMC -- as fund houses are known -- online.

Once you get onto their Web site, you will get their office addresses, phone numbers and a contact e-mail address. You will even be able to transact online with some of them. 

Online addresses of the AMCs 

ABN AMRO Mutual Fund

Benchmark Mutual Fund

Birla Sun Life Mutual Fund

BOB Mutual Fund

Canbank Mutual Fund

Chola Mutual Fund

Deutsche Mutual Fund

DSP Merrill Lynch Mutual Fund

Escorts Mutual Fund

Fidelity Mutual Fund

Franklin Templeton Mutual Fund

GIC Mutual Fund

HDFC Mutual Fund

HSBC Mutual Fund

ING Vysya Mutual Fund

J M Financial Mutual Fund

Kotak Mahindra Mutual Fund

LIC Mutual Fund

Morgan Stanley Mutual Fund

Principal Mutual Fund

Prudential ICICI Mutual Fund

Reliance Mutual Fund

Sahara Mutual Fund

SBI Mutual Fund

Standard Chartered Mutual Fund

Sundaram Mutual Fund

Tata Mutual Fund

Taurus Mutual Fund

UTI Mutual Fund

Invest online with the mutual fund

Some mutual fund Web sites allow you to invest online. However, you must check if you have an account with the banks they have partnered with.

For example, Prudential ICICI Mutual Fund allows you to buy funds online if you have a banking account with any of the following banks: Centurion Bank, HDFC Bank [Get Quote], ICICI Bank [Get Quote], IDBI Bank and UTI Bank [Get Quote].

You can buy units of SBI [Get Quote] Mutual Fund's schemes only if you have an account with the State Bank of India or HDFC Bank. 

Get in touch with the fund house

By going online, you will be able to locate the fund house's address and phone number (toll free number in some cases). You can call and request them to send an agent over.

Or, if you want, go over personally. Do make an appointment; you may end up wasting time if the person you want to speak to is not available.

Some, like Prudential ICICI Mutual Fund, have a form you can fill and submit online. Do so and they will send someone over to meet you.

2. Visit your bank

A number of banks are mutual fund agents.

Just walk into your branch and ask if they are selling any funds. See if they have a tie-up with the fund house you want to invest in.

3. Ask around

Ask your colleagues, neighbours, friends and relatives. Someone will know an agent. Just ask them for his contact details or ask that he get in touch with you.

4. Visit the AMFI website

The Web site of the Association of Mutual Funds in India has a list of mutual fund agents across the country. 

Under the heading Investors Zone, you will find another one called ARN Search. This refers to the AMFI Registration Number.

Click on it and you will arrive at a search page. You can locate an agent in your vicinity by just putting in your PIN code or name of your city.

5. Check the online finance portals

Do you have an online trading account? Then you could check if they also sell mutual funds online.

If you do not have an online trading account and are considering opening one, you could look for a player that offers both.

Some like ICICI Direct sell funds online. But you must have a trading account with them. Others, like India Bulls and Motilal Oswal, do not have this facility online but if you call and leave your contact details, they will send an agent over.

Here are some of the prominent players.

5 paisa

Geojit Securities

HDFC Securities

ICICI Direct

India Bulls

InvestSmart Online

Kotak Street

Motilal Oswal


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