POSTED BY May 26, 2008 COMMENTS (94)ON
ULIPS are investment cum insurance products, You take an insurance worth XYZ amount and then you pay some premium every year. Out of your premiums some amount is cut as administrative expenses (Premium allocation) and out of rest the mortality charges are cut for your insurance and the rest is invested in market linked things.
1. You decide the tenure of your Insurance and the insurance amount, depending on which mortality charges are cut from your premium you pay.
2. The Premium allocation charges are very high in initial years (especially 1st year) and then reduces in later years. That’s the reason one should be invested in ULIP for long period to get maximum benefit.
3. The investor can switch between the investment style as and when he wants (max 4 free switches in most of the cases, there after some nominal fees).
4. ULIPS must be considered for long term investment products, so that the high cost in initial years are averaged out over longer period.
– The switching over different styles is not costly, you are not charged when you switch, which make them flexible.
– ULIPS are innovative products and suits people who want long term wealth creation with some insurance too..
– They are not good product for people who require high cover and can pay less cover, because premium depends on the cover. Higher the cover, higher the premium. So these people must take term insurance for there life insurance.
– For people investing only for tax benefit must avoid them as they will prove to be costly in short term because of there high allocation charges.
ULIPS have sec 80C benefit, but for that you have to pay minimum of 3 years premiums to avail this tax benefit. You can not stop ULIPS before 3 years to get tax saving benefit. You will get the tax benefits at 3 different stages –
2. Goal based investing or planning
ULIPS also helps your to secure your future goals like retirement planning, wealth creation or your child’s education planning.
You can choose the cover for your policy. In most of the insurance companies, the cover provided is 10 times your premium, however some of the insurance companies are providing the insurance covers of upto 40 times of your premiums.
ULIPS also provides you the benefit of partial withdrawal which will help you in case of emergency.
The money actually invested is invested as per your directions … ULIPS have different plans with different risk-return profile. One plan may have allocation of 80-20 to equity and debt, some other can have 50-50 and some can have 20-80 and like this.
ULIPS have become very popular in last some years as agents have put there life and souls in advertising them and making people believe that they are wonderful product. Every product is wonderful for some or the other. If you can take good risk , need less insurance and closely want to monitor markets and economy so that you can switch your investments from one plan to other, ULIPS are great for you … else they are not..
Evaluate yourself and dive 😉
I would be happy to read your comments or disagreement on any topic. Please leave a comment.
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94 replies on this article “All you want to know about ULIPS”
I want to surrender my elite life 2 policy paid 2 yearly premium of 2 lakhs how much icici will charge for surrender( after complete 2yrs) how much I will get only fund value ? Please reply on my email
HI, I have a ULIP, where the policyholder name is Sneh Khattar(my mother) and Insured Person name is Himanshu Khattar (i.e. me). Can I avail tax benefit for this policy?
No, only the policy holder will get the tax benefits !
I believe you need to be more practical and correct in placing your numbers & facts.
Guys , Pl ask for Estimated benefit illustration from any company you choose which will give you clear picture of charges and benefits and then decide.
It will also tell the gross yield and net yield post all charges which makes sense to compare and choose.
I have a vast experience in Insurance therefor posting my views.
Everything is not great and fact as per Manish’s version ( apology Manish for being rude ).
But fact of the matter is it depends on your time horizon to hold the funds in particular fund …
Charges should not be worry till the time you want to enjoy the designated benefits.
I believe every product has its own charm and therefore it existence Just that we need to be careful to choose one that suits us rather than saying the product is bad … good for me can be bad for you and vice versa.
Yes, agree with you. Please share which part of the post I need to make more balanced. Its a very old post and I might have written something which might be skewed to a biased opinion at that time. I am ready to make the change 🙂
I recently purchased Elite Wealth II plan from a reputed insurer. Then I surrendered the policy within the free look period & received my premium back with minor deductions.
There are few things which I found shall be of interest
1. The agent will tell you that the maximum charges ( Allocation, administration, FMC etc. etc.) as per IRDA is 3%. But he will never tell that above this 3% there are mortality charges ( which increases with your age & are really very high ) and service tax (15%) which are excluded from the 3%.
2. The sum assured is highest of either the fund value or the maximum sum assured SA whichever is higher. So here is the catch .
Suppose I pay a premium of 5 lacs per annum (for 5 years) thus minimum SA is 10 times of premium so 50 lacs. Premium paid is 25 lacs in five years & policy term is 30 years. Now suppose something happens to the insurer after 14 years. In these fourteen years assume your fund value reaches to 45 lacs. As per policy the sum assured to be paid to the nominee is 50 lacs . So the family receives 50 L.
Now out of this 50 lac received by the nominee, 45L was your own money the insurance co. only paid Rs 5 lac as insurance (45 + 5 L). If you have invested this money in MF which would have given you between 40 – 50 lac & taken a term insurance of 50 Lac then the family would have received 50 lac as SA and your savings from mutual fund i.e 40 L + 50 Lac around 90L in total. If you increase the insurance cover in ULIP then mortality charges increases which erodes your money.
3. The agent will tell you after if 15 years mortality charges become zero. If you check from IRDA table of your plan mortality charges become zero only when your fund value reaches the sum assured of the policy. If due to market conditions the fund value do not reaches to SA value then mortality charges continues and are adjusted from your fund units. And as I said mortality charges are higher as your age increases.
4. The agent may tell you that you can take out your paid premium money after 5 years i.e 20 percent every year. No one is clarifying that if I pull out my money then the fund value will never reach to the SA value. So the mortality charges will continue for the next 30 years I.e. for the whole policy term. Finally Mortality charges will eat up the fund value like a termite.
These are my conclusions from recently surrendered ULIP plan :
a) insurance is not good for investment. I would always prefer investment in large cap Mutual fund with a monthly SIP plus term insurance to secure me and my family future
b) if a person still want to go with ULIP Plan like Elite wealth II then also buy a term insurance to support your family in case of any unfortunate event
c) if a person still want to go with ULIP Plan like Elite wealth II for investment purpose, I don’t know but check if you can take a plan for a person having low mortality factor like child or wife so that mortality charges are low.
d) do not buy riders ( critical health, hospitalization etc.) in your insurance policy, better buy a separate health insurance plan which covers and protect in better way within in the same amount as paid for the rider in the policy.
e) do not be amazed or lured by the documents and presentations shown by the insurance company or their representative on returns or earnings. If ULIP were so good then mutual fund investments would have become a past. Still mutual fund industry is growing while ULIP is shrinking.
These are my personal views after evaluating the policy features. A person with insurance studies and back ground can clarify better. But do not forget to ask these questions to the insurer representatives. Also try to get your charges statements of the existing ULIPs to understand the real deductions. Generally insurance company representatives hesitate to present the statements as you will come to know the exact deductions and minimum returns.
Finally thanks for your valuable time, but I hope this will help you to save invest your hard earned money in the right direction and instruments.
These are some very good findings from your side Sandeep !
I am sure many people will benefit from it 🙂 . I will try to include these points in one of the articles . Thanks for contributing !
Firstly, thanks a lot for creating such an informative website. I have a question for you:
Where can I find and understand the total charges levied by ICICI for its Elite 2 plan. Wherever I go and check this, I find that the ULIP has FMC of 1.35% which is extremely low – even compared to MFs which charge 1.5%.
Is that the total charges in this plan ? nothing else ?
I have already paid a premium of Max Life Insurance ULIP, details as follows:
1. 1 Lakh premium actually for 10 years, but I can stop after 5 years as well (I have paid 1 premium already)
2. My coverage = My premium X 10
3. My returns will be 18 22 % after the period.
But, now I am having a not-so-good feeling about the same.
Now, when I asked them to stop this policy, they told..
1. Premium already paid will be non refundable for 5 years
2. even if you plan to stop policy, the money you get back will be just 75K or so..
NOTE: My 2nd premium is on 8th May.
Check if its as per terms and conditions or not
Last year I bought ICICI Pru Elite life II with allocation to maximser V fund. My annual premium is Rs. 2 lacs. Its time to pay my second premium & I am not sure whether to continue with this policy. As I understand if I discontinue my money will be locked for 5 years & also discontinuation charges will be levied adding to further loss. Does it make sense to discontinue. Please guide.
Yes, both those charges will be there !
Dear Manish ,
I appreciate your valuable feedback about the ULIPs especially about ICICI Prudential Elite Wealth and for all those replies where you have clearly asked people to ” Surrender ” the policies . I understand you are complete ANTI- ULIP , but do you realize before saying ” SURRENDER ” that the investments once done can be surrendered only after completion of 5 years and also that should be done looking at the current market valuation . It’s said that all eggs should not be kept in the same basket , similarly you can’t just suggest everyone to invest in Mutual funds and not in ULIPs , if I tell you even MFs have a cost associated which is usually hidden , FMC which is close to 2.5- 3 % is a cost on the entire fund where as Premium allocation charge, administration charges etc are on premium . Also with this Elite – Wealth plan after 5 years you get loyalty additions , wealth boosters etc . I am not saying Mutual funds are anyway bad products , but it’s not that ULIPs are . As an educated investor one should look at the Pros and Cons and then invest . Thanks …!!
Thanks for your comment JYOTI
Hi i think you are doing a great job. I am looking to make a long term investment with horizon of 15 to 20 years mainly for my kid so that i can use this money for his education at that time. what are your suggestion for that…….what would be an ideal investment.
Also like many others on this thread I have also been approached by the ICICI guys to invest in elite wealth more as an investment rather than insurance ( as i already have a term insurance) and the reasoning is simple, there is more returns due to a lower 1.35% charges which it seems in the long term matter a lot and make a huge difference. Also there are unlimited switches allowed in this scheme. The returns quoted are pretty decent. I know you have repeatedly told people to stay away from this…….but can you kindly explain why not……..how does this product with charges as low as 1.35% , still should not be considered for long term.
I think the question is more or less the same as megha in the previous comment. can you kindly bring some clarity to this issue.
I dont think that the charges are just limited to that. If you look at various other charges, it would add up to more.
I suggest to do SIP in mutual funds.
If you want our help, we can help you on that.
Hi I appreciate your your advice about investing in MF SIP, no doubt its a great product to invest. But if we talk about Elite wealth 2 the average effective charges are even less than 1.35% in horizon of 20 yrs due to loyality additions this product is giving. And the flexibility to make tax free switches from equity to debt and balance fund makes it even more safe product to go for long term. Also this is the only instrument offering debt funds with tax free maturity which MF don’t offer.
I think these features makes it one of the best products to make investment for horizon of 15 to 20 yrs.
What is the IRR of the policy ?
I was going through your suggestions and you seem to be completely anti ULIPs. Although, in your review you have mentioned that ULIPs are good for people who have a long term horizon in mind and are looking for insurance too. I have gone through the ULIP – I-Pru Elite wealth and for a long term investor it seems to be a perfect product. Given it covers insurance and mutual funds like any other ULIP, with unlimited switches and a very low yearly expense when looked at a time frame of 8+ years, I could not find any reason to not recommend /buy this. Your inputs will surely help.
Hi Manish, I am paying 1lakh annually in HDFC life progrowth plus, is it a good decision or bad, will i ever get benefit after 10 year?
Its a traditional policy , not the best thing I would say !
Few month back I have taken HDFC click to invest ULIP for the period of 15 year, and i invest 4000Rs/month.
Now i feel i may not get good return through this policy, am looking to discontinue this policy and invest same amount in SIP. Pls advise
You can do that and I think it would be a good idea
My ICICI agent strongly advised me to invest 5 lakhs/annum for the period of 10 years in the ICICI Elite wealth II plan. Do you recommend the same? If not, any advise on where to invest in current market? I am looking for a safe investment with some profit.
I dont recommend it
plz tell me. where to invest .. i want to invest rs 10 lac per annum… whic options to invest
My dad has bought this plan as per his ICICI agent and paid as 2L as first premium. He has to pay another 5 premiums. He was told that the 10L invested will mature as 14L. is it worth continuing? He was told that this is a good investment option and he may lose 2L if he discontinues this.
10->14 in 5 yrs , seems like nothing great .. its how much % ? some single digit I guess .
I went to an ICICI advisor for investing in the equity market but he managed to sell ICICI Elite Pru. I was looking to invest in the long term for my son. have the first premeium. Does it make sense to continue it or with draw from it now?
Stop it now
Please advice on ICICI Pru Elite Wealth II plan, premium is 500000 per year for 5 years.
Its a ULIP , avoid it
I am Raj, I have two ULIP’s with SBI from June 2008
1. SBI Life Growth Pension Fund (Unit Plus-II-Pension Option I), 3k Monthly for 24 years
Present Fund value INR 379521 & total monthly investment till date INR 255000
I want to use the maturity amount for my daughter’s education.
2. UNIT PLUS-II REGULAR for SA 12 Lakh, 6k quarterly for life time., but I am planning to close it once it is 30 years.
SBI Life Growth Fund 50 %
SBI Life Equity Fund 50 %
Present Fund value 239398 & total investments till date INR 174000
Will use the mature amount for my retirement savings.
Request your kindness please let me know shall I continue these plans or close them. I know both of them working well, but when I started these plans I was not knowing anything on ULIPs (not now too)…Someone guided/misguided me……..…but I have already invested for 7 years now………really in a dilemma now to stop or continue (if I stop I will lose all the 7 years of investment) & once again I need to think for the fresh investments.
Better close them now . Surrender !
Hi Manish, Last month, due to pressure from a convincing ICICI Pru agent I bought the Wealthbuilder II plan for limited pay option for Rs. 1. 25 Lac annual premium. Looking at the policy doc and first premium receipt I realise that the charges were 6% p.a. of premium allocation charge for first year, 2.52% p.a. policy administration charge deducted monthly and a 1.35% p.a. of fund management charge deducted on a monthly basis by adjustment of units. I am unable to understand what would my actual cost be each year for the first 5 years. I am getting a sum assured of 12.5L. How do I calculate this please?
Its very high it seems . like 10-12% . not worth .. Surrender it
Need suggestion on financial planning,I’m 35Yrs Old,for another 15 yrs i wnated to save 10,000/- month and it should be useful for tax saving as well and Returns should be tax free . I’m not intrested in Term Ploicy.i’m already investing in gold.
I need your help on 10,000 per month in the below categories.
Life Insurance Policies..(Example Birla Sunlife Vsison Income…)
Mutual Funds (New to Mutual funds,Can you please guide me what is the best way to invest money in mutual funds and types)
How much % we can expect after 10 yrs or 15 yrs?
ULIPS(Aegon,HDFC Click 2 invest…)
How much % we can expect after 10 yrs or 15 yrs?
I am writing an article on this topic. and will share with you about it
Need your guidance on an investment decision. My wealth manager from ICICI has been very strongly recommending that we invest in ICICI Elite Wealth II. His argument to justify the investment is the Elite schemes are designed to take the tax advantage of ULIPs but the charges etc are much lower and so they work out very well.
We’ve already invested in ICICI Elite retirement solutions scheme. Also have investment in a few mutual funds like reliance close ended equity II, ICICI pru value fund, DSPBR equity fund, HDFC top 2oo, BSL sunlife banking and financial services fund.
Please help me decide if ICICI Elite wealth II makes sense and his argument is right. Super confused as everything I read says ULIPs not good but he’s pretty convincing 🙁
Just stay out of it
WHy i was unaware about this site before investing in ULIP 🙁
Hi Suvarna, whats your case ?
Ever since I started learning about personal finance I have heard that ULIPS are complex product so I didnt try to understand n invest in ULIPS. Tnq to Manish and Jagoinvestor. Else I would have invested in some ULIPS listening to my agent. Tnq again !!
I have being paying ULIP premiums half yearly Rs. 25000 since Nov 2010 in Maxlife Shiksha plus II. I had opted for growth fund (70:30 Equity:debt) ratio since the begining. Now a month back I switched to Balanced fund + Growth fund (50-50).
Total premiums paid=Rs. 150000. Today fund value is Rs. 116000. Performing very badly. Q1) should I stop paying further premiums or stay till completion of 5yrs lock in period. Q2)should I stay in Growth fund option for all 20 years to leap Ulips long term benefit
I would have come out of it, If I were at your place.
would take ur advice. Should i wait for two months more for it to complete five years as withdrawl penalty would then decrease, or, keep the money there. If withdrawn where do i park the money.
Dear Manish, I have approx rs 5 lakh in icici smart kid and life stage pension and have been paying monthly payment of rs 8000 for both the policies for 4yr and 10 month now. Due to poor returns would like to know whether to continue or take out lump sum and invest in MIP or otherwise. pl guide.
I would have surrendered it !
Manish please say something about SBI LIFE SMART PERFORMER.
Please open a thread to discuss it here – http://www.jagoinvestor.com/forum
However you and other financial planners may try to educate the people about charges and other issues in ULIPs , things will not change so easily. The only way which can really make a big difference and that too very fast and effective is reducing commission to the agents and making it on par with mutual funds.
That has happened with ULIPs , the commissions came down , but then agents moved to endowments plans !
Down but not at MF level or no upfront type.
I have “LIC’s Money Plus” ULIP in July 2007, so far I have paid 4 years premiums[2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010] continuously. After that I didn’t pay for the year 2011, 2012.
Someone says that If two premiums are not paid consecutively, it is waste to keep the policy and they ask me to surrender the policy. Can you please give me your thoughts.
P.S: I have paid Rs: 10,000 for 4 years… so totally Rs: 40,000 and now the I have 3290 units with each unit costing about Rs: 13
You should better check your IRR return from the policy, only then you can comment on its performance !
I have calculated IRR as -2% [assuming unit cost as Rs: 11.5]
It’s a loss for me 🙁
Now take the corrective action !
I would like to know is it good for people moving back to India after the age of 55 yrs to settle 8 mths there & 4 mth in USA . How expensive it would be & if somebody has pre existing condition like diabetes or any thing like that . Please let me know
Thanks a lot…
I found this article very useful.
Earlier I was unaware of switching option available in ULIPs.
Also, I fell for a ULIP plan only for tax saving purpose (without knowing other important features) but after reading this post I am planning to keep it for a longer period.
I have a question here. According to point no 1:
“You decide the tenure of your Insurance and the insurance amount , depending on which mortality charges are cut from your premium you pay.”
Does it mean that I can reduce the insurance tenure and insurance amount and thus reduce/minimize the share of mortality charges? So that this ‘extra’ amount can be diverted to investment part of policy.
But you can choose that only while buying the policy in start , not in between now !
Your articles are very informative and helpful.
Please guide me in these two queries regarding ulips.
We have two ulip funds- ICICI Life time pension growth fund , the FV at year beginning was around 124000, and thru the year it has fallen to 122000 approx.We have invested 80,000 thru 8 yrs.
Please guide as to which swithc option should we operate so as to incur minimum loss. The other fund is HDFC UL YOUNG STar Growth fund, in which we have already invested 1,80,000 in 6 yrs and the FV reamins at 1,75,405 as of today. SHould we Stay with these policies and use switch option to cover our losses. If so which option should we choose? Or should we surrender our policies!!
Ask it on forum : https://www.jagoinvestor.com/forum/
Planning to buy HDFC SL YoungStar Super II for my one year old kid
but need advice on child ULIPS plans from any good financial advisor
All “Financial Planners” , why you all oppose so much for Child ULIP plans. Does any Equity MF offer cover (if Parnets die) to there Childerns. Apart from that they Pay all the future Premuims (its ok that they charge for the same but that is minisucle amount), which are Allocated in right way in Stock Markets in absence of parents which is the main benefit in CHILD ULIP PLAN. There are various type of Fund Options and Allocations inULIP Like P/E fund , Trigger Portfolio Strategy which helps from Ups / Downs of the Stock market. And fetch better Returns from the investment. (No Equity MF gives this benefits).
How can child allocate the amount it receive from insurance companies in term plans even it will managed by say its ‘guradians’ , Rather then believing others and there startegy of investing its better to stay with the Insurance companies you had taken Child Ulip Plan.
And in the long term say 10-15 years or more Ulips can fetch better returns than Equity MF. All Ulips charge not more then 1.35 % FMC (LIC charge only 0.80 % )and taking all other charges & bonuses combined it will not be more then 1.5 % or so . Also in ULIP there is no pain for evaluting like we have to do in MF Schemes every year or so.
Whereas Equity MF charging upto 1.75 % to 2.50 % . (according to fund size)
So it is clear that both of them charges for there professional fund management nothing comes for free wherther it is MF or ULIP’s.
So, We should keep CHILD ULIP Plans & MF Schemes in investment category and Term Plans in Insurance category. Also now in the ULIP PAC had been capped by IRDA, provide Loan upto 50 % & 5 years lock in ,which are good reforms in ULIP category.
Financial Planning is when you are there, if you are not there then its Child Planning. And Child Ulip Plans comes into effect.
Think personally in this matter and reply ,
presently i buy canara hsbc smart stay life paln the annual premium i s 1 lkh pa
what you would like to suggest ? is this good to get goo dreturns? which fund option i should select , how much is the risk involved? i am thinking to stop the paymanet after 03 installments
Also comment on tata aig paln ( 1.5 lk pa premium ) 03 premiums to pay for 03 yrs & after 7 yrs you get almost double amt
The plans you are talking about are ULIPS , seems like you dont have much idea on how they operate and their costing . They are expensive products if you dont knwo hw to use them in the best way using swithing.
I tried to educate people about the importance of life insurance (especially since one of my neighbors who was very young died after second stroke leaving his young family of a wife and two small kids. He had no life insurance cover whatsoever. Believe me it is very easy to convince people that term insurance is better than ULIPs and endowment plans, but when it is time to take action they always go either to ULIPs (most often) or traditional policies. There are two reasons for this, one emotions dominates good judgement wrt money and 90% of Indians knows how to make money but lacks the knowledge of investment.
Yup .. its tough to make peeople take action . however if they do not take action , it means that somewhere in their heart they have not truly understood the term insurance,on this blog almost all the people who said that they understood things well went ahead and took term insurance .
May i know the difference between CAGR and IRR. Could you write any article on this?
Thanks in advance,
IRR is a method to calculate CAGR for regular payment of irregular amounts
Your blogs on investment are excellent. I felt it was very difficult to understand the terms that are used in Investments, but once i started reading your blogs, i understand them rightly.Do Keep up your good work and we would surely keep coming to you for any clarifications:-)
Great , I would love to discuss more on any doubts you have .
please provide your valuable feedback on the following MF portfolio:-
uti master share ( D)
reliance regular saving E. share (G)
reliance natural resources (G)
require your suggestions.
Is there any risk associated here?
plz suggest me more funds ..
( i am 22 year old & i want 2 invest 2 to 3 thousand per month )
2 plan better future…
Better invest in pure equity diversified funds , dont get into sectoral funds like Reliance Natural Resources . check : https://www.jagoinvestor.com/2009/08/list-of-best-equity-diversified-mutual.html
please tell me whether i can invest in bharti axa bright star plus child plan @50,000/annum? how is this company?
Its a ULIP again and we dont suggest any ULIP’s , please stay away , read
These is the first time i’m going through this site… i want to tell u one thing very honestly, what a job man…Great work.. please please keep it up. Actually, these site was recommended by my brother to me has i’m very found of reading books on investment and looking for the information on investment. The information provided by you is very simple and easy to understand. Once again thanks for giving such a valuable information and once again please please keep up the Great Work.
Thanks for your comment .. Nice to know that you are really enjoying the articles on this blog .. Keep coming 🙂
Found ur blog 3 days back, very informative..thanks for sharing your financial knowledge!
Can you post an article comparing the benefits, advantages and dis advantages between ULIPS and Mutual funds…and finally which is a better option (of the two)for investing in equity?
Thanks for the comment . I will surely write on that .
After reading the article , what do you personally think you should do .
Just answer these questions to yourslef
– Is it providing you the required insurance cover you need ?
– Does it provide great return over long term ?
– Can you do better than this policy using those 10,000 per year ..
If I were you , my answer to myself would have been NO , NO , Definately YES 🙂 for 3 things .. What about you 🙂
Thanks a lot for great articles!
i m hving LIC Money Plus allredy TWO yearly premiums paid of 10000 each. and current unit balance is 1500 only. current nav is around 11. what should i do. pls advice.
Thanks a lot for great articles!
i m hving LIC Money Plus allredy to yearly premium paid of 10000 each. and current unit balance is 1500 only. current nav is around 11. what should i do. pls advice.
I did not understand what you asked , please be clear . Please leave your name too .
Hi Sir, I am very upset because my units are being deducted while NAV Value is increasing. I took ULIP policy 2 month ago. 4 days ago Unit balance was 1771, NAV value – 15.2065 and fun value – 26940.5
But today UNITs are 1754 NAV value – 15.40, and fund value is 27018.
So please suggest me why they deduct units balance?
THey deduct because of various charges associated with ULIP
This is a nice article. But if you add the information on how to manager the distribution of funds,it’ll be very good for the newbies.