Laxmi Ji or Saraswati Ji – whom should you worship this Diwali?

First of all, wishing you and your family a very Happy & Prosperous Diwali.

Diwali is the most celebrated festival for Indians and we all light our homes with diyas. It symbolizes victory of Light over Darkness. We also do LAXMI PUJAN on this very auspicious day. But have you ever wondered at the time of performing puja that why Devi Saraswati Ji is always there along with Devi Laxmi?

In our view, Laxmi Ji – the Goddess of Wealth, stays with person who also worship Saraswati Ji – the Goddess of knowledge. Wealth may come to someone who does not have knowledge but it does not stay there. As they say a fool and his money are soon parted.

We are always of this belief that Investor’s knowledge is of first importance in being financially well off. Indian Investors save close to 30% of their income and financial instruments from 60% of their savings. It means that 15% of the income of Indian Household is saved through investments in Financial Instruments.

Indian’s Household saving pattern:

If we look at the break-up of investment pattern of Indian Household, it will clearly show that Indian Investors lack knowledge in the field of Financial Instruments which from the maximum part of their Financial Planning. Because of lack of knowledge, we either make wrong decisions by following path which everyone else are following or land up  investing where we feel most comfortable. Mind you, the most comfortable position in life is not the most successful one. Our maximum  savings are in Bank Deposit and that is because we are not Financial Literate. Now despite being one of the biggest savers in the world, we the Indians, are not richest and it proves the very fact that Goddess laxmi blesses only those who worship Godess Saraswati. Take a look at the graph below which gives you the breakup of our financial saving pattern:

Now if you analyze it closely, 76% of our investments are in the from of Bank Deposits, Life Insurance, Non – Banking Deposits and Cash. If you look at their returns net of inflation and taxes, you will be astonished  that these investments make you poorer rather than richer. We must take Real Return in Consideration rather than the return on investment. In the last 20 years, the average rate at which prices of petrol & diesel has increases is well over 9% & 12%. The cascading effect of such rise increases the prices of almost everything that we buy and use. Just analyse your monthly budget or school fees that you used to pay and now that you are paying for your kids.

Because of lack of Financial Knowledge, we tend to make many mistakes, the list of few are mentioned below:

Why Laxmi Ji Rides on an Owl Carrier?

Sir John Templeton said “If you want to have a better performance than the crowd, you must do things differently from the crowd.” what is peculiar about owls is that they can see more clearly at night than during the day – means doing opposite to others. So rule is being fearful when other are greedy, and being greedy when other are fearful. If you follow this simple rule of Owl, laxmi Ji will come & stay your place.

We are not trying to convey that you should invest everything into equity. We just want to convey that look at share or equities with different perspective. Don’t invest into shares directly unless you don’t have the knowledge to do so. As said earlier, first worship Goddess Saraswati and then Laxmi Ji will herself come to your doors. Investors who do not have the knowledge and experience in stock market are well advised to take route of Mutual Funds. (Read Benefits of Mutual Fund)

This article of ours got published in leading Personal Finance Magazine “Money Mantra” as their Cover Story(Diwali Issue 2010) Click here to read full article.

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Hemant Beniwal is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and his Company Ark Primary Advisors Pvt Ltd is registered as an Investment Adviser with SEBI. Hemant is also a member of the Financial Planning Association, U.S.A and registered as a life planner with Kinder Institute of Life Planning, U.S.A. He started his Financial Planning Practice & TFL Guide Blog in 2009. "The Financial Literates" is a dream & mission to make Indians Financial Literate.

13 COMMENTS

  1. Great Article as always. I just want to take a moment and Wish you and the TFL community a Happy Diwali. Thanks for keeping this community alive and sharing views. Everyone is learning something new everyday and the good work must continue and benefit mankind.
    Enjoy the festival and holidays with your family, friends and loved ones.

  2. Hi Hemant
    For the last three years investments in equity mutual funds have not given anything to investors whereas investments in bank deposits have given from 8 to 10% returns. This is making even the die hard equity investors nervous. I would like to share the views of Value Research on the current situation.
    Departures from the normal are sometimes hard to recognise, but for Indian mutual fund investors, they have become so widespread that they are now hard to ignore. At this point of time, here’s the situation in the major asset classes. Equity hasn’t really hasn’t done anything in more than three years and the only type of fund that has got investors excited for a long time are gold funds.
    None of these things are supposed to happen. Take the simplest case, that of equity investments. It’s a cornerstone of investment planning that over longer periods of time, the risk of equity is minimal and likelihood of high returns is high.
    When you step back and take a high-level view like this, then you could be forgiven for thinking that something is seriously wrong with what we thought was the normal. Perhaps something has changed fundamentally. Perhaps, as an investor, you now need to abandon what you thought were the basics of investing and look for a new set.
    Everyone of these odd things is a departure from the mean and you should expect a strong reversion to the mean at some point. The current combination of strange happenings is little more than a curiosity that will fade away.

    • Hi Anil,
      There is a great sense hidden in this lines – if someone can really understand “Everyone of these odd things is a departure from the mean and you should expect a strong reversion to the mean at some point.” And the late it is – more money will be made by sensible equity investors.

  3. Thank you Hemant ji,
    Its been a pleasure to read your article, every one of it is a jewel.
    Happy Diwali to you and your team and your family too.
    May God bring all the blessing to you and your family, keep writing.
    God Bless You.

  4. To All TFL Readers
    Deepavali marks the victory of good over evil, light over darkness, knowledge and wisdom over ignorance.
    This is why during this festival, people light ‘diyas’ and worship Goddess Lakshmi, to bring health, wealth, happiness and prosperity into their homes.
    During this festival of lights, when you buy gold, new clothes, and sweets, and celebrate with firecrackers, remember to plan for your finances – gain financial knowledge and wisdom and achieve your life goals so you can have a peaceful and enjoyable Diwali every year!
    Here’s wishing your family and you Deepavali ki Shubhkamnayein!

  5. Hi Hemant
    I agree with you that very few Indian households own equities and a substantial portion of the savings is kept in debt instruments like bank fixed deposits. But this has been a blessing in disguise as the poor performance of the equity markets in recent times has not adversely affected too many people.
    In contrast, a very substantial portion of Indian households invest in other asset classes like gold and residential property. Prices of these have zoomed in recent years. It would therefore be safe to assume that the wealth of Indian households has increased considerably in recent times when the markets have not given anything.

  6. Hi Hemant
    In India it is hard to dampen festive feel good. It is evident that even RBI’s interest rates heading north yet again have not dampened the mood too much. If Diwali rush for shopping is any indication, it is clear that Indian consumer is unfazed by the gloomy pictures which most TV commentators are trying their best to paint.Policy paralysis and governance dificit are trendy phrases to use, but not much more than that.
    Growth in sales is the most reliable measure of growth in demand in India.Financial results from corporates tell us a much happier story of the Indian economy than official statistics which in any case are not very reliable. It is a pity that most TV commentators remain unfair to the Indian economy. They have failed to appreciate the acceleration in corporate sales. The sceptics do not see the impressive rise in two wheeler sales which are far more important than the decline in car sales. Indians have money and they are willing to spend.

  7. Dear sir,

    I have read your article it’s so nice wealth without knowledge is not stay.
    In this invest pattern why you ignored the Gold? Because gold has reached the all time high, Maximum indian investor are investing in the gold.

  8. Hi Jayakumar
    Major portion of your investment should be in equity and debt. Exposure to gold should not exceed 10%.

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