Friday, December 28, 2018

Best bank to open SGD/HKD NRI or FCNR Fixed Deposit? DBS vs ICICI

If you are living and working in Singapore or HongKong and thinking to open FCNR (Foreign currency Non-resident) fixed deposits in Singapore and HongKong dollar i.e. SGD or HKD then, unfortunately, you don't have many choices as not all Indian banks provide facilities to open FCNR fixed deposit in SGD and HKD. Most of the Indian banks supports 6 major foreign currency for FCNR deposits e.g. USD, GBP, EURO, JPY, AUD, and CHF. Even, the biggest bank of India, the SBI doesn't support SGD or HKD as foreign currency for FCNR deposits. then you should consider DBS bank's FCNR fixed deposit option.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

10 Important Custom and Baggage Rules for NRIs - Indians Returning from Overseas

India is getting prosperous and foreign trip are not the privilege only rich people had in the past. Nowadays, many middle and upper-middle-class  Indians  are traveling abroad for holidays, vacations, honeymoons, study and just for work to nearby countries e.g. Singapore, Malaysia, Dubai, Thailand etc. Apart from the hassles of Passport and VISA, one more thing which bothers many Indias is the customs rules and the worry about what they can carry back to India without paying customs duty while shopping overseas.

Friday, November 30, 2018

What happens to bank account, Fixed Deposit, and Insurance Policy When you become NRI?

One of the most common doubt among new NRIs are about their bank accounts e.g. what happens to their bank account, Fixed deposit, Demat accounts, brokerage accounts, and insurance policies when they become non-resident Indian? Well, once your residential status changed from resident Indian to non-resident there are certainly few changes in your financial accounts. For example, your resident account needs to be converted into NRO account. You also become eligible to open NRE (Non-resident external) account. Similarly, once you become NRI you need to inform your bank about your fixed deposits, brokerage accounts, and insurance policies.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

6 Reasons to invest in National Pension Scheme for Retirement Savings

Retirement Planning is very important in the age of nuclear families and western culture. There was time when Indians never bothered about Retirement Planning or Insurance because they trust that their children particularly Son will take care of them both financially and emotionally, but with nuclear families its not possible anymore. Many elders are living alone nowadays and hence Retirement planning is essential for a relaxing and rewarding retired life.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Limit of Foreign Currency NRIs or Foreigners can Bring to/from India - Indian Customs Limit for Foreign Cash

In the last article, I told you how much Indian currency NRIs are allowed to take Overseas and in this article, I'll talk about how much foreign currency NRIs are allowed to bring India and then take back while going to Overseas. The discussion is also valid for many foreigners and tourists traveling to India. There is no limit to bring foreign exchange in India from the USA, Singapore, Dubai, UK or any other country, barring the local rules which tells how much foreign currency you take without declaring to Immigration or after declaring to customs.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Does interest earned on NRO saving account and FD are Taxable in India?

Yes, unlike interest earned on NRE saving account and NRE fixed deposits which are totally tax-free in India, interest earned on NRO saving account or NRO fixed deposit are taxable in India. In fact, as per the current regulation, tax is deducted at source @normal rate of 30.9%, which is calculated by @30% + surcharge + cess 2%, surcharge can be up to @10% if taxable income is more than 10 lakhs INR. Which means, funds lying in NRO account can be taxed at the rate of almost 40.9% in India.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Should you take personal loan/ balance transfer in Singapore and pay off a home loan in India?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions among Singapore NRI community. I often receive queries from IT professionals working in the city-state who have home loans back in India and thinking to pay off in full or a portion of them by taking a personal loan or credit card balance transfer in Singapore. Well, the idea to take a loan to pay off another loan only make sense if you are getting a cheaper loan and paying off a higher interest loan. Since most of the home loans in India charges around 9.5 to 11% in INR and you can get personal loan on credit card also known as balance transfer in Singapore for as low as 2.5% for 6 month it make a lot of sense to take a personal loan in Singapore and pay off your home loan in India, though there are some risk which you need to consider. For examples, this only make sense if you have the visibility that you will be in Singapore for next 6 month or more.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

What is difference between an NRI and a PIO?

Though both NRI and POI are used to refers Indians living and working abroad and they have more or less similar rights to open a bank account, buy properties in India and restrictions e.g. not allowed to buy agriculture lands, there is some difference in terms of citizenship and origin. NRI stands for Non Resident Indian, whereas PIO stands for Person of Indian.

An NRI is an Indian citizen who stays outside India:
(a) for purposes of carrying out employment or any business or vocation;
(b) under circumstances indicating an intention to stay outside India for an uncertain duration;
(c) any Indian citizen deputed outside India for a temporary period in connection with employment

Sunday, July 22, 2018

The Best Tax Saving Option In India - ELSS Mutual Fund (Equity Linked Saving Scheme)

Many people so much effort to earn money, but they don't put even 10% of that to save money from taxes and expenditure. In my post 10 ways to save money, I have talked about some general saving tips, now here you will learn how to save income tax by investing money in the mutual fund. Though there are many ways to save income tax in India, some of them I have mentioned in my post 13 ways to save tax under section 80C and today we'll talk about one of them, called ELSS. It is a special type of mutual fund which stands for Equity Linked Saving Scheme, money invested in it is exempted from income tax. You can save up to one lacs of money by purchasing ELSS mutual fund. Imagine, you have a package of 10 lacs INR, which puts you on the higher side of income tax rates, by putting some money on ELSS scheme, your taxable income automatically reduces, which sometimes can benefit from lower tax rates as well.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

H-1B VISA May not be extended for those waiting for Green Card( permanent residency) in USA.

One of the big news I have heard this week was the changes in H-1B VISA by Trump administration which can affect as many as 500K Indians living in the USA and working in the technology sector. The H-1B VISA is the most popular way for Indian IT professional to travel the USA. In general, it is first issued for 3 years but can be extended for another 3 years. Which means an individual who goes to the USA on H-1B VISA can stay their as long as 6 years. After that, he has to come back India or go outside the USA for another 1 year before he can come back, but there is a twist.