Mutual fund houses added over 77 lakh investor accounts in 2016-17, taking the total tally to a record 5.54 crore on growing interest of retail as well as HNI investors.
In comparison, 59 lakh folios were added in the preceding fiscal. In the last two years, investor accounts have increased following robust contribution from smaller towns.
Folios are numbers designated to individual investor accounts, though an investor can have multiple ones.
According to data from Association of Mutual Funds in India (Amfi) on total investor accounts with 42 active fund houses, the number of folios rose to a record 5,53,99,631 at the end of March 2017, from 4,76,63,024 at the end of March 2016, a gain of 16 per cent or 77.37 lakh.
Growing participation from retail as well as HNI (high networth individuals) categories have helped in raising overall investor accounts, FundsIndia.com Head of Mutual Fund Research Vidya Bala said.
Individually, HNIs' folios rose by 39 per cent to 25.12 lakh.
Last fiscal saw a surge in the number of retail investor accounts, which comprises equity, equity-linked saving schemes and balanced categories, by 15 per cent to 5.23 crore.
“The fiscal year 2016-17 saw retail and HNI folios touching the highs of March 2010. These folios took almost six years to get back to the March 2010 levels of 4.76 crore. They crossed this mark in June 2016 and as of March 2017 stood at 5.48 crore,” she added.
Overall, the country's mutual fund industry managed an asset base of over Rs.18 lakh crore. It is likely to cross Rs.20 lakh crore in the current fiscal.
Mutual funds are investment vehicles made up of a pool of funds collected from a large number of investors. The funds are invested in stocks, bonds and money market instruments, among others.