Archive for August, 2013


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - August 27, 2013 at 2:55 pm

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Jobs to Earn 7 Digit Salaries

6. Lead Software Engineer

Forecast Job Growth (Through 2020): 30 Percent 

Job description of a lead software engineer includes providing work leadership to staff who are responsible for performing complex tech related tasks such analysis, programming, design, unit testing of software applications and more, using appropriate development modules/methods. They are also responsible for providing process development and contribute to build foolproof strategic enterprise architecture.

As per the Payscale website, the pay packages of these professionals are in the range of 5.08 lakh to 14.66 lakh per annum. 

A Bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field is the per-requisites to enter this field.

5. IT Manager

Forecast Job Growth: 18 Percent

IT managers play a critical role in the modern workplace. They are responsible for everything from constructing a proficient business plan and directing internet operations to overseeing network security. And the job description includes coordinating, planning, leading research and overseeing computer related tasks or activities; directing the work of computer programmers, systems analyst, supporting specialist, and other computer related employees; coordinating and planning activities such as implementing or upgrading software, programming, system design, developing computer networks, and implementing internet or intranet sites; and so on.

These professionals draw a healthy salary that is in the range of 3.22 lakh to 22.31 lakh per annum.

A Bachelor’s degree in IT related subjects or a business degree, plus few years of relevant work experience are some of the pre-requisites to land a job as an IT Manager.

4. Engineering Manager

Forecast Job Growth: 9 Percent

Engineering managers are the professionals who lead and supervise engineers, scientists or technicians in their daily duties, plus are responsible for coordinating production, quality control, research and development of new products or procedures. Engineering managers are one of the most well paid professionals in the job industry and their pay packages typically ranges between 4.37 lakh to 21.26 lakh per annum.

The entry level educational requirement for this field is a Bachelor’s degree in an engineering specialty field such a mechanical, civil, aviation and so on, plus sufficient business knowledge.

3. Product Marketing Manager

Forecast Job Growth: 14 Percent

These are the professionals who are responsible for defining the type of products that a business needs to sell to maximize the employer’s revenues. And as a product marketing manager you will be responsible for choosing the appearance and function of the products, pricing of the products, selecting the appropriate advertising strategies and how the product will be introduced to the customers.

Product managers typically draw salaries that are in the range of 3.96 lakh to 26.96 lakh per annum.

Attention to details, an eye for quality, and ability to grasp and translate technical capabilities into benefits, along with a Bachelor’s degree in business administration with a focus on marketing are some of the fundamentals to enter this field.

2. Tax Manager

Forecast Job Growth: 9 Percent

These are professionals who are responsible for planning, preparing and analyzing tax returns of an organization. They also lend their hand to effectively manage tax risks and liabilities associated with complex business transactions such as mergers, acquisitions, initial public offerings and so on. In addition, these professionals are involved in the development of tax saving strategies for clients and integration of tax related data on financial statements.

With a pay package that is roughly in-between 3.02 lakh to 29.79 lakh per annum, this is the second most lucrative profession on the list.

A Bachelor’s degree in accounts or finance, plus substantial experience as an accountant is some of the essentials to enter this field.       

1. Sales Director

Forecast Job Growth: 12 Percent

Sales directors are the professionals who are responsible for planning and directing the sales activities of a business organization. In addition, they are responsible for supervising junior level sales team members and maximize the potential revenue in their assigned product segment, territory or target market.

These professionals bag in a handsome pay that is roughly around 12.70 lakh to 58.29 lakh per annum, and the educational requirement to enter this field is a Bachelor’s degree either in business administration, marketing or a related discipline.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - August 21, 2013 at 6:31 pm

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Cygnett SpeakUp

Cygnett SpeakUp

Going retro looks uber cool, especially when it concerns the Cygnett SpeakUp speaker system. All you have to do is place your smartphone in the (64mmwide) bay between its stereo speakers and plug in the 3.5mm stereo jack. Lo and behold, it will function as a music dock as well as an old-school telephone with a corded handset.

Specs: 3.5mm stereo jack to connect smartphone | DC to USB power, with option for AA batteries | 210 x 760 x 190mm | 567g


Price: 2,499

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - August 13, 2013 at 5:28 am

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Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II camera

Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II

If you’re looking for a hassle-free camera that promises you DSLR-type photos, you might want to consider the RX100 II. This point-and-shoot, housed in a light aluminium body, uses a large one-inch sensor that guarantees better image quality than most compacts. Besides, it is also equipped with Wi-Fi that makes it easy to connect wirelessly with your smartphone to transfer photos or videos. This snapper also boasts NFC (Near Field Communication) technology that allows you to touch your NFC-enabled Android smartphone against the RX100 II to create a wireless connection. In fact, it even lets you trigger shutter release from your smartphone – great for group shots when you don’t want to be left out of the action.

Specs: 20.2-megapixel BSI Exmor R CMOS sensor | 25-100mm, 3.6x optical zoom lens | ISO up to 12,800 | Optical image stabilization | 13 picture effects (27 with variations) | 1080p Full HD video | Built-in stereo microphones | 3-inch tiltable LCD screen | HDMI, USB 2.0, Wi-Fi, NFC | Lithium-ion battery, 330 shots (CIPA).


Price: 42,990

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 5:27 am

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Budget options for Android smartphones just got sweeter with the entry of the Xolo A500S. This sub-10k handset runs on the new Android 4.2 operating system, and is packed with essentials such as A-GPS. Besides, it comes pre-installed with Xolo Secure – an anti-theft app that lets you remotely lock and track the device. A safe investment indeed.

Specs: 1.2GHz dual-core processor | Mali-400 MP GPU | 512MB RAM | 4-inch TFT touchscreen, 480×800 pixels | Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean) | 4GB (internal), microSD slot (up to 32GB) | A-GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth | Cameras: 5MP (rear), VGA (front) | 1400mAh battery | 125 x 63.2 x 8.98mm | 120g


Price: 6,999

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 5:26 am

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I would like to buy a dual SIM smartphone

I would like to buy a dual SIM smartphone, within a budget of 15,000. I have narrowed down on the HTC Desire U and the Samsung Galaxy Duos. Do you have any recommendations beyond these?

—     The HTC Desire U and Samsung Galaxy Duos don’t offer value for money because of their dated hardware. Instead you will be better served by…

The Lava Iris 504Q at 13,490 has enough firepower, in the form of a quad-core processor, 1GB RAM and a 5-inch IPS HD display. This is more than enough for productivity as well as a bit of gaming while on a tea break. This Android 4.2-based phone is marginally slimmer and lighter (by approximately 20g) than the Micromax Canvas HD devices, cutting down on bulk and heft.

The Karbonn Titanium S5, priced at 10,399, runs on Android 4.2 and has a quad-core processor and 1GB RAM purring under its hood. It, however, fronts a middling 5-inch (960x540px) qHD screen. Still, this spec is quite adequate for all your work, and entertainment needs.

The Lenovo P770 at 12,199 comes with an adequately-sized 4.5-inch touchscreen, 1GB RAM and a modest dual-core processor. While in pure processing terms, its performance may not be on a par with the devices mentioned above, it comes with a 3500mAh battery that promises well over a day on a single charge.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 5:24 am

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Can you suggest a good resolution camera that’s capable of low light/night shots, with good zoom

I have budget of around 15,000 (plus or minus two to three thousand). Can you suggest a good resolution camera that’s capable of low light/night shots, with good zoom, capable of short videos, but with minimum button tinkering.

—    Given your budget, you can pick the cream of point-andshoot cameras that are equipped with a decent magnitude of optical zoom, and are even capable of Full HD videos. It should be noted, however, that most of these shooters – despite the high ISO levels they advertise – might not be capable of quality low-light and night shots. That said, these snappers are still capable of very good photographs when used with the right mode or setting. Our suggestions are…
    The Canon Powershot SX260 HS at 15,500 (12MP, 20x optical zoom, 3-inch TFT LCD, 1080p Full HD video) is a GPS- camera that’s capable of good pictures even in low light. This would be our first choice.
    The Nikon Coolpix AW110 at 16,500 (16MP, 5x optical zoom, 3-inch OLED, 1080p Full HD video) makes it to our wish list because of its rugged build quality: waterproof up to 18m and shockproof up to 2m. It is also equipped with GPS, as well as Wi-Fi that allows for image sharing and also remote control with smartphones and tablets.
    The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ25 at 15,600 (12MP, 16x optical zoom, 3-inch TFT LCD, 1080p Full HD video) is capable snapper that promises sharp and vibrant photographs consistently. It also provides easy access to aperture and shutter priority modes, so enthusiast photographers, who are willing to experiment, can look beyond plain ‘Auto’ photos

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 5:21 am

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make sure you don’t end up with bad stocks from good sectors

Sectors to bet on in a polarized market

With polarization likely to continue for some more time, make sure you don’t end up with bad stocks from good sectors

    Long-time investors are probably experiencing déjà vu right now. For, the current polarisation in the market has clear shades of the situation during the 1999-2000 rally. It is polarisation that is worrying the market experts, not overvaluation.
    Currently, two types of polarisations are taking place simultaneously. One is on a segmental basis because scared investors are dumping small- and mid-cap stocks and rushing to the safety of largecaps. This explains why the broader market is in the doldrums even though benchmark indices like the Sensex and the Nifty have managed to hold on to reasonable levels. The speed of polarisation has increased significantly in the recent past.
    The second polarisation is on a sectoral basis. While some sectors, such as FMCG, IT and health care, continue to generate fabulous returns, others like real estate, capital goods, power and cyclical metals, are bleeding (see chart). Surprisingly, the ongoing rally is among counters that are supposed to be defensive. How did this happen?
    To begin with, the smart set of investors moved out of high-beta sectors, such as infra, capital goods and cyclical commodities, to defensive sectors like FMCG, pharma, IT and high-quality private-sector banks some time ago. Since these counters have generated positive returns in an otherwise falling broader market, the existing investors are not ready to sell even at higher valuations. Besides, more and more new investors are chasing these sectors. These momentum chasers have taken their valuations to unsustainable levels.
    Experts are worried about the acute polarisation, which is almost reaching the level of capitulation. When investors sell equities, giving up any previous gains in the stock price, so that they can move out of the market into less risky investments, it is called capitulation. “Capitulation is happening at both the ends of the market,” says Sanjay Sinha, founder of Citrus Advisors. “While there is panic selling at one end, there is panic buying at the other end,” he adds. While one end of the Sensex is quoting at 30-40 times, the other end is quoting at six to eight times. Clearly the current trailing Sensex PE is not displaying the true picture.
    The question that now haunts market participant is the duration for which the new momentum sectors will hold up the benchmark indices. The general consensus is that the sectoral and segmental polarisation may continue for some time. The market believes that the RBI and the government may not be able to bring the economy back on track anytime soon. A case in point is the failed effort by the RBI to support the rupee. It has only ended up hurting both the equity and debt markets.
    “It may take another 18 months for the broader economy to recover, and the market may regain its strength only after this happens,” says Phani Shekhar, fund manager, PMS, Angel Broking. With the economy still facing trouble and the interest rate outlook turning muddy, investors have no option but to hide behind the strong sectors.
    The ongoing polarisation may also continue for a little longer due to sectoral rotation. For example, most sectors that led the 1988-1992 rally, be it banks or construction, did not participate in the 1998-2000 rally. However, they came back with a bang during the 2003-8 one. Similarly, the sectors that led the 1998-2000 rally—IT, FMCG, pharma, telecom and media—underperformed during the 2003-8 one. What remains to be seen now is whether history will repeat itself in the current rally, which is being fuelled by the same sectors as the ones in 2000. During that period, FMCG and pharma had fallen behind after the initial thrust, leaving only the information technology, media and telecom sectors to lead the Sensex.
    No matter how the chips fall, it’s worth taking a closer look at these ‘momentum’ sectors, not least because of the divergent trends within. “Compared to a few good stocks, there are several bad ones in each sector,” says Shekhar. So sector-wise analysis won’t suffice. Investors need to be careful that they don’t end up with bad stocks from the right sectors.
Since the depreciating rupee is increasing the cost of imported raw materials, the FMCG sector is now facing margin pressure. Despite the correction, it remains the costliest sector. “Since the FMCG valuations are still high, the investors who are not tracking the market very closely can avoid this sector,” says Shekhar.
Though this sector is a beneficiary of the rupee depreciation and the economic recovery in the US, it continues to be plagued by domestic issues. One is the drug prices control order (DPCO), which forces them to sell at lower prices in the domestic market. Investors need to worry about companyspecific negatives, such as Ranbaxy, Wockhardt, and the like.
Private-sector banks
This sector has done well in these troubled times. But investors have started separating quality banks, such as HDFC Bank, which can report strong revenue growth without asset quality issues, from others. Revenue growth slowdown and asset quality concerns may crop up even in the ‘quality’ banks if economic growth slows further.
Currently, this continues to be the favourite sector because it is not affected by domestic problems. The hope of economic recovery in the US, a major source of revenue for IT companies, is another reason for the bullishness. The recent depreciation in the rupee will also help IT firms. However, don’t ignore the segmental shift. “I am not as bullish about mid-caps as the large-cap IT companies,” says Shekhar. Among large-caps, experts recommend TCS and HCL Tech rather than laggards like Infosys and Wipro.
This sector is a late entrant to the current rally. Several factors are working in its favour. The 2G scam and other issues plaguing the sector are acting as an entry barrier. With the latest entrants finding it difficult to survive, the competitive pressure in this sector has come down significantly. This explains why strong incumbents like Bharti Airtel and Idea, among others, have managed to report good numbers. Since Bharti is still struggling with its South African operations, investors bet on Idea

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - August 12, 2013 at 7:13 pm

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The need for capital protection

The need for capital protection

That there is no return without risk is not mere financial theory, but an investing reality

    There is an old story about Mulla and his friend. The friend hides his bag of gold coins in a small pit in the garden. Every other day, he digs it up and counts the coins. One day, he runs back to Mulla to report that the bag has been stolen. Mulla tells him in his characteristic style, “How does it matter? You weren’t using the money anyway.” Many of us like to treat our money the way Mulla’s friend did. As long as it is there, we are happy, even if it is lying unutilised and idle. Our obsession with the protection of our capital is harmful for wealth.
    The returns from investing can come only when the money is made to work. When we use the money, we spend it; when we let someone else use our money, we invest it. It would be easy for all of us if investment choices were simple, straightforward, and came with that one factor that pleases us—no damage to the invested capital. Many investors confidently declare that they are not asking for too much when they insist on one basic criterion—that they get back their invested money. It is not possible to put the money to use and protect it as well, and if we place it in a bag in our backyard like Mulla’s friend, it will lose
    Anyone who uses our money will build assets with it. The return from these assets will be used to provide us the return on our invested capital. Any asset-building activity is fraught with risk. If the finance textbook tells us that there is no return without risk, it is not mere theory, but a simple statement of investing reality. Anybody who uses our money, including the bank, is using it to build assets, and this activity cannot be done without taking risks.
    The student who went to an engineering college and found that the promised job was not there at the end of the course, has also made an investment and is faced with the risk of low returns. The travellers who took the delayed aircraft, tourists who ate a less-than-satisfactory meal, and the people who found that they married the wrong person have all taken risky decisions. There is no rule book that would have helped them make better choices with predictable outcomes.
    If we take risks easily when it comes to several critical decisions in our lives, why do we seek the unattainable capital protection in investments? Behavioural psychologists have long pointed out that we are not too capable of making complex decisions that involve a lot of variables. We simply use rules of thumb that make it easy for us. If the food smells good, we are willing to eat it without stepping into the restaurant’s kitchen.
    When it comes to finance, we run back to capital protection because the thumb rules we frame in our mind are broken too often and the promise of performance is too far away in the future. How financial assets will perform in the future is an unknown variable both common investors and experts grapple with all the time. Even the best-laid plans can fail; the best-managed businesses can collapse; and well-thought out strategies can misfire. When there is a deep fear of the unknown, we choose to clutch on to capital protection. It is our search for a simple and easy-to-understand outcome that encourages us to seek capital protection from our investments. Next in line is the fixed rate of return. We term both these needs as ‘minimum’, displaying our need for anything that we can hold on to, given the complexities in the world of finance.
    We are very prone to making errors when we operate from this eager position of seeking unrealistic simplification. We buy into tall claims easily. Someone who prints a brochure listing ‘assured’ returns is able to mobilise money and run Ponzi schemes. Investors trust these claims even more when the capital is returned as promised. The return of capital, complete and intact, is the sign of a good investment in our minds, when we have shut out all complexity. Fraudsters, therefore, play on this need. We also trust ‘experts’. We think that someone else could have figured the complex world of finance, and if they also have a track record of success, we can follow it blindly. This fits in with our need for simple rules and visible performance.
    Soon enough, we have exposed ourselves as eager believers of stories that hold these ingredients. The thumb rules spread far and wide. ‘You won’t lose money in an IPO.’ ‘You should sell when a fund manager changes.’ ‘You should buy on a Monday.’ ‘You should buy before the budget.’ None of these rules work consistently.
    What is worse is that the unscrupulous world of finance smiles on benevolently when we are ripped off our wealth with false promises and premises. From trading portals that encourage speculation, to distributors who tell us that our money will earn 15%, we, as investors, have been exposed to organised lying and cheating. We make money for a short duration and then spend a longer period in complete remorse, having lost even more. We return to our comfort zone, where we seek minimum criteria to invest. It all sounds reasonable to ask for ‘at least’ capital protection after having lost a fortune with risky investments.
    We would be open to understanding risks in investing if we are able to sift out the risk that is avoidable. In a world where we are not shocked by rampant unscrupulousness and fraud, where we are confident about the disclosures made to us, we are able to trust those who ask for our money, we may be ready to learn about risks. Until then, with each shock that we suffer, we will run back to the need for capital protection, however unrealistic it may actually be.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 7:10 pm

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Have you missed the tax filing deadline?

Have you missed the tax filing deadline?

If there is no tax due, you can file your return till March 31, 2014 without paying any penalty

    The surge in the number of efilers on 31 July, the last day for filing income tax returns, overloaded the system and forced the government to extend the deadline to 5 August. This last-minute rush has become a regular feature in the past few years. The system gets overloaded because a large number of taxpayers wait till the last day. In the melee, many of them are unable to file by the due date.
    The rush was greater this year because of the new rule that if your taxable income is 5 lakh and above, it is mandatory to e-file your return. Also, if you have foreign assets, you have to take the online route even if your income is below 5 lakh.
    There are other reasons why a taxpayer may miss the filing deadline. There could be mistakes in their Form 16 or TDS details, which could not be resolved in time. It is also possible that the details of foreign assets, which have to be mentioned in the tax returns, were not available, or perhaps, the taxpayer was too ill to file his return. If, however, you have missed the extended deadline as well, the good news is that the Income Tax Department allows you to file your returns till 31 March 2014, the last day of the assessment year.
    However, missing the filing deadline is not an earth shattering event. The online filing data reveals that the biggest surge in tax filing is witnessed not on 31 July but on 31 March the next year. This year, for instance, the peak daily rate of receipt of returns was clocked on 31 March when 7.5 lakh taxpayers filed their returns.
    If all taxes are paid, a taxpayer will not face any penalty or get a notice for non-filing. However, if there is some tax to be paid, he will have to shell out a 1% late payment fee for every month of delay since April 2013. If the tax due is more than 10,000, the taxpayer should have paid an advance tax. Advance tax is payable in three tranches—30% is to be paid by 15 July of the financial year, 60% by 15 December and 100% by 31 March. If advance tax has not been paid, the penalty per month will be applicable from the due date of the advance tax.
    There is more good news for the lazy taxpayer. If you miss the 31 March 2014 deadline, you can still file the return. This means you can file last year’s return as well. However, such returns will be treated as belated and the assessing officer can levy a penalty of 5,000 for late filing.
    Though the tax laws give you a grace period if you file your return late, you also forego some of your rights as a taxpayer. For one, you cannot modify your tax return if it has been filed after the due date. If you have filed by the due date (5 August for this year), you can modify it any number of times before the end of the assessment year or till the return is assessed. However, after the due date, you are not allowed to modify it. So if you miss any deduction or exemption, you can’t claim it later.
    You also cannot carry forward any short-term or long-term losses if you have filed after the due date. The taxpayers who file by the due date can carry forward capital losses and adjust them against future capital gains. They can also carry forward these losses up to eight financial years. So, if you suffered capital losses in 2012-13, these can be adjusted against gains made till 2020-21. This benefit is not available to the late filer.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - at 7:05 pm

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