General Stuff

The following post is a sponsored post.

How to invest in stock market? How to get started? These questions can be rather scary for you, isn’t it? How much money you should put in stocks, stocks to buy today, which mistakes to avoid, etc. must be kept in mind. Here are a few pointers to help you invest in stock market and decide which stock to buy.

A beginning investor should ideally not start with the individual stocks. Buying a single stock is kind of riskier than buying a mutual fund that has a large group of stocks. But, if you already have a diversified portfolio of mutual funds and equity funds then you can have a few individual stocks because individual stocks may give you better returns. Also, if you build your portfolio by collecting stocks on your own, you will save a lot of money as you don’t have to pay to a fund manager.

How much to invest?
There is no fixed amount, but you can invest more when you are young and if you are close to your retirement, you should reduce your risk to ensure not to play with your capital. Take your age, subtract it from 110, and the percentage that comes should be what is invested in the stocks. Do know your appetite for risk.

How many different stocks to buy?

For investing in stocks, buy at least 15 different stocks in different industries to have a diversified portfolio. If you are a beginner, start with a lesser number of stocks.

How to choose a stock?

  • Start with a company that you are aware of, because at times a lot of investors buy stocks without understanding how these companies make money, and in such cases, they may have losses
  • Consider price and valuation. Investors often buy stocks that are cheap or lesser in value. But cheap is not always good, and expensive is not always bad. This is measured by the stock’s price-to-earnings ratio or P/E. P/E below about 15 is cheap and a P/E above 20 is expensive.
  • Compare a company’s P/E to other companies in the same industry. This will help you notice if it is cheaper or is more expensive than its peers.
  • Measure the financial health of the company. Study the company’s financial reports. The public companies release their quarterly and annual reports. Do go through the Investor Relations section of their portal.
  • Find out the revenue growth. In the long run, the stock prices increase when companies are making more money. This translates into growing revenue.
  • Check the company’s profit margin. A company that has a growing revenue and also has a reduced cost, will also have expanding margins.
  • Does the company have debt? Do know the company’s balance sheet. The stock price of a company having more debt will be more volatile.
  • Find a dividend or a cash payout to stock investors. It may not be a regular income for you, but a guarantee of good health of the company.


D @ Work

by Vinaya HS on May 18, 2011

in General Stuff


I was speechless.

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I’m Hiring for My Team at MetricStream

by Vinaya HS on January 10, 2011

in General Stuff

A good number of software development/software testing positions to be filled — both in my team and in my colleague’s team. Across experience levels.

Broad skills that we’re looking for:

Web application development/testing, Java application development/testing, ability to work with XML, and an ability to work with Databases.

But, most important: Willing to learn.

MetricStream’s an awesome place to work. I know, because I’m particularly particular about that. :-) If you know someone who you can vouch for, email his/her resume to vinaya.hs @


My Whereabouts

by Vinaya HS on November 19, 2010

in General Stuff

Maldives was heaven. Period. The day we came back to Bangalore was the day we left to Chennai for our US visa interviews. I was supposed to make a trip to our US office and convinced D to take a long overdue vacation from work. D’s best friend A stays near San Francisco and that did the trick. We got our visas — the whole “halo” around the US visa interview is something that I’ll write about in detail later. A couple of days later we were in San Francisco minus our baggage thanks to British Airways.

So this is where I am. Hope to return to my blogging schedule shortly — if my Garmin nüvi and rental Nissan allow me to!

To everyone who asked my whereabouts, a BIG thanks. :-)


Tweets on 2010-10-10

by Vinaya HS on October 10, 2010

in General Stuff

KA XX AB 1234 has her own URL.


Tweets on 2010-09-04

by Vinaya HS on September 4, 2010

in General Stuff

@ Namdroling Monastery, Bylakuppe, Kushalnagar.

850IS_ 160


Tweets on 2010-06-20

by Vinaya HS on June 20, 2010

in General Stuff

485 days. 30,000 kilometers.

Copy of IMG_2170

Do you live to drive?

Do you have a budget of around six and a half lacs?

YES to both?

Go and buy a Swift ZXi.


Tweets on 2010-03-31

by Vinaya HS on March 31, 2010

in General Stuff

@ Ahobala Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Sira.

Swift ZXi - Sira

Thanks DJ!


Tweets on 2010-02-12

by Vinaya HS on February 12, 2010

in General Stuff

1 year.

23,216 kilometers.


The Swift ZXi — a marvel on four wheels.




Tweets on 2009-12-15

by Vinaya HS on December 15, 2009

in General Stuff

It’s been a long break from the world of blogging. So many events have happened in this time — my marriage, my trips to Devarayanadurga, BR Hills, K. Gudi, and Rajasthan, and the Swift breaching the 19,000 kilometer mark to name a few.

I’d like to thank everyone who wrote to me asking about my whereabouts. This blog wouldn’t be a success without you. I’ve also received a good number of personal finance queries and I will address these in the coming days.

That said, it feels great to be back. Stay tuned for more from the intricate world of personal finance.


Tweets on 2009-05-21

by Vinaya HS on May 21, 2009

in General Stuff

It’s been a long long break for me from anything close to personal finance. I have had a significant change happen in my life. But this most important change in my life also means that I will now be able to write about personal finance from a different perspective as well. And that bodes well for the GEO blog.

I’d like to thank each one of you for sticking around and for not having given up hope on me. I promise that you won’t be disappointed.

Special thanks to our good old Notary. I am honored to have you in my life mate.


Tweets on 2009-04-06

by Vinaya HS on April 6, 2009

in General Stuff

I apologize for the complete lack of posting over the past few weeks. I’ve been held up by quite a few important events in my life. I hope to commence regular posting shortly. Thanks for your understanding and patience.


Tweets on 2009-03-30

by Vinaya HS on March 30, 2009

in General Stuff

1,600 kilometers. 1 Swift. 2 best friends. Bangalore – Kumarakom – Kanyakumari – Bangalore. 3 days. Infinite memories.


Site Statistics — February 2009

by Vinaya HS on March 11, 2009

in General Stuff


An interesting statistic: Tags contribute just over 5.0% of all site traffic! This particular site improvement tip came from a reader (SB, if you’re reading this, a BIG thanks to you).


Swift Log: 1,100 Kilometers; 18 Days

by Vinaya HS on March 4, 2009

in General Stuff

I’ve been driving around like there’s no tomorrow. If nomads used Swifts, I’d be a nomad. Done with the first free service which is due at the 1,000 kilometer mark or before 1 month. Cost me Rs 936 (oil filter changed; engine oil changed).

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Tweets on 2009-02-17

by Vinaya HS on February 17, 2009

in General Stuff

I apologize for having skipped the previous edition of Awareness Fridays and for skipping today’s edition of Tip Tuesdays. Blame the Swift. Like I told a colleague yesterday, “I wake up and soon find myself inside the Swift; I get out of the Swift and realize that it’s already time to sleep. This cycle repeats.”

I expect normal posting to resume from tomorrow. Hopefully!


Tweets on 2009-02-16

by Vinaya HS on February 16, 2009

in General Stuff

I must apologize for not having posted much the past week. I’ve been having too much fun in my new Swift — yes, I traded-in my faithful Santro Xing at the 44,000 kilometer mark. The Swift’s so much fun that I honestly don’t want to do anything else but drive around — even for ridiculously short distances! I did a significant amount of theoretical research; one test-drive made my research redundant.

My decision making process was quite simple. No Hyundai (had enough of being “decarbed”). No Ford (why would you ever want to make this mistake?). No GM (need I say more?). No Mahindra (no taxis please!). No Fiat (seriously confused brand). No Skoda (buy car; no money to drive/service it). No Honda (no money to buy; forget driving/servicing). No diesel (give me one convincing argument). Yes to ABS, airbags, and driver-seat height adjust.

Update: No Tata (didn’t want to stop 100 meters from the showroom, open the bonnet, and scratch my head).

The logical choice: Maruti + my budget => Swift ZXi.

My impressions of the Swift ZXi. Only one. WTF (why; not what) didn’t I buy one sooner?


Site Statistics — January 2009

by Vinaya HS on February 4, 2009

in General Stuff

GEO Blog Jan 09

A dramatic rise — 30.18% in pageviews and 31.35% in absolute uniques — in January!


A reader recently wrote:

A suggestion. You seem to have labels for blog posts but there is no listing of what labels you have used. It is therefore difficult to search for a specific set of posts unless the label exists in one of your posts. It would be convenient if you can list the labels on the right-hand side so that clicking a label displays all posts tagged with that label.

I got down to implementing this enhancement last weekend. You can now find on the right-hand side of every page the complete list of labels that I have used for all my posts on personal finance. Clicking a label gives you the full set of articles that have been tagged with this label.

Did you find this enhancement useful? What other improvements do you wish to see?


Site Statistics — December 2008

by Vinaya HS on January 4, 2009

in General Stuff

Reached the 25k pageviews milestone!


Traffic pattern through 2008.