The SBI Small & Midcap Fund, which was suspended for new investments in October 2015, will reopen for fresh subscriptions through the systematic investment plan (SIP) mode from May 16. It will be called SBI Smallcap Fund and have an investment cap of ₹25,000 per month and per PAN card.
It is the first fund to reopen for fresh subscriptions after many smallcap funds had put restrictions on inflows because of rising inflows, higher valuations and lower investment opportunities. It was closed for a subscription since it had a capacity constraint of ₹750 crore on its assets under management.
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Following the introduction of new rules by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) for rationalisation of mutual fund schemes, the fund will now fall in the smallcap category. The erstwhile SBI Small & Midcap Fund had emerged from the acquisition of the Daiwa Industry Leaders Fund by SBI in November 2013.
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As per the new rules, a small cap fund can buy stocks beyond 251st stock in terms of market capitalisation. Prior to this, the scheme could buy small-cap stocks only beyond 401st stock in terms of market capitalisation. “These new norms give us 150 more stocks to choose from with higher market capitalisation and hence and we are in the final process of taking internal approvals for opening the scheme for SIPs only.
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The fund, with assets of ₹770 crore, is managed by R Srinivasan and is among the best performing smallcap funds. In the past one year, it generated returns of 35.2 per cent, compared to the category average of 17.75 per cent. In the past five years, the fund returned an annualised 36 per cent, compared to the category average of 31.58 per cent. Investors have been flocking to mid-cap and small-cap schemes in the past three years owing to higher returns from such schemes. Several funds in these categories have placed restrictions on inflows because the available stocks are limited and liquidity is low. Reliance Small Cap Fund, L&T Emerging Business Fund, DSP Blackrock Small Cap Fund and Mirae Asset Emerging Bluechip Fund are some funds which have put restrictions on fresh lumpsum investments and SIP inflows into their schemes.
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