27 December 2007

5 states hold 60% of demat a/cs: Rediff India

5 states hold 60% of demat a/cs

The Indian equity market may be one of the best performers in terms of returns. However, the so-called equity cult is yet to spread in the country as the number of equity investors is just 1 per cent of the total population. To make matters worse, less than 40 per cent (37.66 per cent) of the investors are in Maharashtra and Gujarat. The rest of the citizens and most of the states and Union territories are not affected directly by either boom or bust in the stock market.

According to the data available from National Securities Depository (NSDL), the leading depository, nearly 62.8 per cent of the demat accounts are in the five states � Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

As of September 2007, NSDL had 6.57 million demat accounts. Since then, one lakh new accounts are being opened monthly. Central Depository Services (CDSL), the other depository, has 3.5 million demat accounts as of date.The state-wise demat accounts data indicate the spread of equity cult in the country. Both NSDL and CDSL jointly have approximately 1.10 crore demat accounts, of which around two-thirds are with NSDL and the rest with CDSL.

Of the total demat accounts, the share of the five states is around 62 per cent. Maharashtra leads the number of demat accounts with 22 per cent share, followed by Gujarat with 18 per cent share. These are the only two states having more than a million accounts in NSDL.
The data reveal some more interesting but shocking facts. Demat accounts in Union territories are even less than 1,000. In 16 states and Union territories, demat accounts number less than 1 lakh.

Gujarat is considered to be the state with the highest number of investors. But if measured by the number of demat accounts, which is mandatory to invest in equities, Gujarat follows Maharashtra. In terms of incremental growth, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have seen significant growth in demat accounts in the last two years. However, the growth in Gujarat and Maharashtra is negligible.

NSDL Managing Director C B Bhave said, "Because of the booming capital market, the number of demat accounts are also growing at a fast pace. Every month, on an average, 1 lakh demat accounts are being opened with NSDL."

According to Nikhil Daxini, executive director, business development, Angel Broking, "The main reasons for many states not participating in the equity market are lack of awareness, low level of income and education." Angel is one of the largest brokerage houses and has more than 7,000 terminals across the country.He said in Gujarat a majority of demat accounts were in Ahmedabad and Surat and in the Saurashtra region and the Kutch district.


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