I had to speak at a Church (Parish) in Mumbai on Investing. In a religious gathering it was necessary to keep in mind what the scriptures said about investing. So the topic I chose was ‘Scriptures and investing’.

The Christian community is quite conspicuous in its absence in the financial services field – especially in the investing areas like equity. They are largely in the bank deposits, company fixed deposits and in certain pockets in real estate. I had to reassure them that investing was not against the scriptures.

The first topic that needs to be considered is whether investing is or  is not scriptural as in many cases, the answer depends on the situation.

The question to ask is  ‘Why are you investing’?

Anyone investing because of
•    Greed (Luke 12:15),
•    To get rich quick (Proverbs 23:4-5),
•    Or to massage his ego (Proverbs 29:23)

Is not participating in biblically-based investing. Today whether you are a Christian or not, largely the sales person is selling to you on the basis of these three ‘appeals’. When a sales person tells you

“See you missed the opportunity of a 80% jump in the market – in the year 2009” he/she is appealing to your a) Greed – will I get the same / similar kind of return in 2010 and going forward? and b) Fear – If I do not invest I will miss the opportunity to earn…such extraordinary returns.

When he/she tells you “Give me Rs. 500 a month for 2 years, and this scheme will give you Rs. 1000 a month for the rest of your life” they are appealing to your ‘Get rich quick’ mentality.

When the adviser tells you ‘Sir Subramoney is wrong. SIP works only in a rising (falling) market, SIP is not exciting. Also sir SIP is for poor people who can do Rs. 500 or Rs. 1000 investment per month. For rich people like you we are marketing a Venture Capital fund – sir the minimum amount is Rs. 50 lakhs – and you can invest in 3-4 instalments. You need to make it up to Rs. 50L in the next 3 months.Any way sir here is an invitation for a meeting at the Trident /Oberoi /Taj / Sahara Valley /…

Clearly they are massaging your ego.

If you succumb to any of these 3 sales pitches….well you are going against the scriptures!

This was slide number ONE…there are more slides, but am not promising the time frame in which I can write about this…

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  1. subra,

    whats the hindu scriptures take on investing?

    Am also enthused with Islamic banking principles and the scheduled promises it offers/..

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