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Associate Professor Department of Commerce, University of Madras
B. PONNARASI Ph.D Research Scholar Department of Commerce University of Madras R.M.DURAIARASAN Ph.D Research Scholar Department of Commerce University of Madras ------------------------------------------------

Investors attitudes towards financial investments have always been a Back support for the investors appetite which is largely attributed to both cognitive and affective components of attitude. This study focuses on investors attitudes from three perspectives: investors attitudes towards the chit fund, towards investees (small level finance companies) and formation of consumer attitudes based on external stimulus. Investors are now investing more on chit funds because of safety, liquidity, capital gains and transparency. The savings and investments behavior of investors such as purpose of savings, current holding of investment are evaluated after focusing on general profile of the respondents in this study. The study area for the present research is triplicane. Focus of the study is based on the factors that influence investors investment behavior of the salaried, business, house wife and small level shop owners etc. The present investigation outlined that mostly the investors have positive approach towards investing in chit funds. The research study indicates that the satisfaction level of the investors towards the service provided by the investee is 90%. The data clearly shows that the 56% of the respondents earn a profit of 15% and more and this shows that the profit earned through chit funds is a very considerable amount. Keywords: investment, finance, influence, trust, attitude. -------------------------------------------------------------------

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INTRODUCTION Savings form an important part of the economy of any nation. With the savings invested in various options available to the people, the money acts as the driver for growth of the country. Indian financial scene too presents a plethora of avenues to the investors. Investors attitude about saving schemes will have a significant impact on the saving behaviour of people. For example, people who have positive perception about the scheme in which they have invested will continue to invest in the same scheme. Very often, they will start investing on other schemes from the same institutions. People with positive perception might tell good things about the schemes to other people. In fact, they might act as unpaid publicity agents. Hence, it is necessary to study about the attitude or perception that exists among investors about saving schemes and institutions offering such instruments. The sooner one starts investing the better. By investing early you allow your investments more time to grow, whereby the concept of compounding increases your income year after year. The three golden rules for all investors are: Invest early Invest regularly Invest now

Chit is a kind of savings scheme practiced in India. In a chit scheme, a specific number of individuals come together to pool a specific amount at periodic intervals. Usually the number of individuals and the number of periods will be same. At the end of each period, there will be an auction of the money. Members of the chit will participate in this auction for the pooled money during that interval. The money will be given to the lowest bidder. The bid amount will be divided by members, and thus determining per head contribution during that period. Usually the discount will continue to decrease over periods. The person getting money in the last period will receive the full scheme amount. Such chit fund schemes may be conducted by organized financial institutions or may be unorganized schemes conducted between friends or relatives. There are also variations of chits where the savings are done for a specific purpose A number of studies that has been took place in India to examine the investment habits and preferred investment avenues among the households. The Indian Household Investors Survey, 2004 concluded by saying investment preferences among household investors have important socio-economic implications. Such preferences influence the direction in which, and the channels through which, household financial savings would flow. A developing economy,

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like India, needs a growing amount of household savings to flow to corporate enterprises. Such flow can grow on a sustained basis if, and only if, there is an effective system to ensure that the enterprises receiving the flow are sound and will make proper use of the money provided. In the absence of effective checks on mismanagement and misappropriation at the corporate enterprise level, the savers investment preference is turned away from corporate shares and securities towards other savings instruments. REVIEW OF LITERATURE Tamilkodi, (1983) has stated that small savings schemes have a psychological appeal and it provides an opportunity for ordinary men, women, and even youngster to park their savings. It reaches a large number of people and covers a wide range of areas. She also suggested that efforts should be taken to simplify small savings schemes to suit the needs of illiterate and socially downtrodden people.

Arangasami, (1992) has observed that more and more dependence on mobilization of resources through small savings will ensure and promote self-reliance. He concluded that the Central government should give proper assistance and encouragement to the small savings agencies, which will be useful not only in mobilization of funds but also for the economic development. Somasundaram, (1998) has found that bank deposits and chit funds were the best known mode of savings among investors. Attitudes of investors were highly positive and showed their intention to save for better future. Karthikeyan, (2001) has conducted research on Small Investors Perception and the study found that Majority (73.3 per cent) of investors of both semi urban and urban areas were very much willing to invest in small savings schemes in future provided they have more for savings.

N. S. Chiteji, (2002) in his paper says that rotating savings and credit associations (Roscas) are a popular form of informal finance in developing countries. This paper examines the Roscas ability to enforce its terms of membership and the implications that this has for their
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existence in an economy. A connection between enforcement costs and the desirability of Roscas formation is illustrated using a framework that focuses on the nature of the financial contract that the Roscas offers, allowing inferences to be drawn about the likely viability of Roscas throughout the development process and the implications this has for debates about financial dualism. Desigan et al, (2006) conducted a study on women investors perception towards investment and found that women investors basically are indecisive in investing in mutual funds due to various reasons like lack of knowledge about the investment protection and their various investment procedures, market fluctuations, various risks associated with investment, assessment of investment and redressal of grievances regarding their various investment related problems.

Abdus Salam and Umma Kusum, (2008) on savings behavior in India, revealed that household sector savings provided the bulk of national savings. The study reported that the share of total household saving has gone up from 75.9 per cent to 86 per cent in 2007-08. Chou et al, (2010) focused on Investor attitudes and behavior towards Inherent risk and potential returns in financial products, attempts were made to establish a model by which attitudes and behavior of investors towards investment risk could be measured. A sample of Taiwanese investors was surveyed to determine their past investment experience and recorded their responses when exposed to economic signals. They concluded that Investors with trading experience have higher risk propensity and tend to have a risk-embracing character. However investors with less experience have extremely high risk perception for stocks.

OBJECTIVES 1. To assess the perception of the women investors towards investment avenues. 2. To analyze the factors influencing the investment behavior of investors in chit fund.

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RESEARCH METHODOLOGY OF STUDY This study is exploratory in nature based on survey method. The study aims at finding out the attitude of the investors towards investment in local chit funds in Triplicane region. This study was based mainly on primary sources. The primary data was collected from the investors of local chit funds with help of the questionnaire which are supplied among the investors of Triplicane. The secondary data were collected from the books, records and journals. By adopting convenience sampling, 180 respondents were selected for this study. The essential data were collected with the help of questionnaire. Further, the understanding of the attitude of investors towards investment in local chit funds may help the local chit funds to formulate strategies for further expansion in their field. The attitude level of the respondents can be examined with the help of their demographic variables. In order to study the attitude of the investors with the investment in local chit funds, various statistical tools such as ranking method, percentage analysis, and Person-correlation two tailed test. RESEARCH FINDINGS The study ultimately focused on women investors. The women investors were classified into three categories such as Working Single (WS), Married not Working (MNW), and Married Working. To start with the demographic profile of the investor percentage analysis was used. Demographic characteristics of investors Table 1 Table- 1 Characteristics of investors Frequency % Gender (Female) Working Single 47 26.1 Married not working 60 33.3 Married and working 73 40.6 Total 180 100.0 Frequency % Age Wise Below 25 40 22 25-50 132 74 Above 50 08 04 180 Total 100 Educational Qualification Frequency % Hr.Sec 30 17 Graduate 70 39 Post Graduate 53 29
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Diploma Others Total Income Wise Below Rs.1,50,000 Above Rs.1,50,000 Total Marital Wise Married Single Total Source: Primary Data

17 09 10 06 180 100 Frequency % 120 67 60 33 180 100 Frequency % 133 73.9 47 26.1 180 100.0

The above table shows the demographic profile of the women investors a relatively high degree of investment among the categories of married and working (MW) 40 % among married and nonworking (MNW) 33.3% whereas only 26% of the working single (WS) have experienced with investing in local chit funds and coming to age level the study find out that 25-50yrs age group with 72% were keen and interested in local chit fund investing followed by below 25 yrs of age group with 22%. The education level has witnessed a high level score of 39% for under graduate and 29% with post graduate followed by least percentage for others like tailoring etc,. The income level states that below Rs.1, 50,000 posses 67 % were interested with local chit fund investment and above Rs.1, 50,000 with 33%. Under marital status 74% of married were interested in local chit fund investing followed by single with 26%. Women Investors Perception of Investment Avenues: Table 2 Women Investors Perception Of Investment Avenues Investment Avenues Frequency % Chit Fund 77 42.8 Gold saving scheme 42 23.3 Bank deposit 35 19.4 Postal savings 16 8.9 Insurance 07 3.9 Mutual Fund 03 1.7 Share 0.0 0.0 Total 180 100.0 Sources: Primary Data
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Table 2 states the perception of women investors towards their of investment avenues. The research study witnessed that nearly 43% of the women investor were opting for the local chit fund avenue secondly followed by the gold saving scheme with 23%, the third and fourth avenue option was given to bank deposits and post office saving with 19% and 9% respectively. The scoring was given to mutual fund surprisingly there was null score for shares avenue and the reason given by the women investor that they have no knowledge about share and if they know also they dont want to due to high risk factors. Factors influencing the investment behavior of investors: Table 3 Factors influencing the investment behavior of investors (Ranks) Frequency % Regular savings and Development 4 19 11 Cash flow is pre-determined 5 17 9 Safety principal 1 35 19 Low risk is involved 3 20 11 Possibility of High return 6 15 8 Liquidity is more 7 14 8 Past performance 8 12 7 Knowledge about investees 2 30 17 Size of fund 10 8 4 Betterment of services attract 9 10 6 Total 180 100 Source: Primary Data Table 3 states what are all the factors that influences the women investors investment behaviour towards local chit fund. The study findings states that Safety principal ranked 1st with 19% followed by Knowledge about investees 2nd rank with 17% whereas 3rd and 4th rank was given to Regular savings and Development and Low risk is involved with 11% and 5th rank for Cash flow is pre-determined with 9% and 6th and 7th rank was for Possibility of High return and Liquidity is more with 8% and Past performance with 8th rank with 7% and the least rank was scored for Betterment of services attract 9th rank with 6% and 10th rank for Size of fund with 4%.

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Connecting Variable Regular savings and Development Cash flow is pre-determined Safety principal Low risk is involved Possibility of High return Liquidity is more Past performance Knowledge about investees Size of fund Betterment of services attract Source: Primary Data

Table 4 Correlation coefficient (r) .137 .231 .148 .573 .149 .210 .527 .397 .272 .231

Coefficient of determination % 1.8 5.3 2.1 32.8 2.5 4.4 27.7 15.7 7.3 5.3

P Value .052 .001 .038 .001 .024 .003 .000 .000 .000 .001

Correlation and P values of each independent variable on the dependent variable (Interest in mutual funds) P >.05 (2 tailed) The test results of Person-product-moment correlation on the parametric data revealed that a number of independent variables such as Cash flow is pre-determined ,Safety principal, Low risk is involved, Possibility of High return ,high level of Liquidity are the factors influenced Investors attitudes through a cognitive route to attitude development and change. Contrastingly Past performance, Knowledge about investees, Size of fund and Betterment of services which are largely perceptual find a touching route to approach development and change. This research acknowledges the limitation of correlation tests and as recommended by Tabachnik and Fidell (2007) applied multiple regression tests to understand the relationship dynamics eliminating the role of intervening variables. It is important to note this research acknowledges the limitations of these tests to establish causality. Based on the results of the findings from multiple regressions test all the null hypotheses are rejected and alternate hypotheses are accepted as there was correlations found with brand image, product performance and desire for new funds. Low risk is involved in chit funds with a highest beta score of .712 contributes most to the formation of positive attitude towards chit funds, which enhances the investors towards chit funds. Once again the findings revealed that both sentimental and cognitive elements are critical on investors attitude formation and change.

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FINDINGS I. It was observed that majority of the respondents selected for the purpose of the study are female investors and they constituted the total of 180 respondents. Whereas. II. The analysis of the data showed that majority of the respondents are graduates, and the respondents with intermediate or below level of education follow them. In terms of percentage, graduates constitute almost 39% and 29% of both under graduate and post graduate t of sample, and respondents with intermediate or below level of education with 32 percent. III. The earning capacity of the households is another factor to be considered while analyzing the influence of various economic factors on investor preferences and behaviour. IV. It is found that a majority of the investors in triplicane Region are quite unaware of shares investment avenues like equity and preference shares, mutual funds, corporate debt securities and deposits. At the same time, they are highly aware of traditional investment avenues like local chit funds, bank deposits, life insurance schemes, and gold savings schemes.

CONCLUSION In olden days, investing funds was confined to rich and business people. But, now a day it has become a household word and is very popular with people from all walks of life. With the rate of interest offered by banks on deposits being very unattractive, more people could think of investing in the local chit funds. From the study it can be concluded that people have good knowledge and belief about Chit funds. Chit funds have reached the people because of the simple procedure and systems. People from all categories like business and others prefer chit funds. Most of the family members also prefer chit funds. The statistical tools conclude that income of the individuals has a say in investment time horizon and age is one of the important factors in deciding about the savings of the individuals.

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1. (Arangasami A. 1992. A study of small savings schemes in Tamil Nadu with special reference to Madras District during 1981-82 to 1990-91. Unpublished Thesis, University of Madras, Tamilnadu, India.) 2. Chiteji. N. S., Promises kept: enforcement and the role of rotating savings and Credit associations in an economy Journal of International Development, 14, 2002 3. (Chou et al. Investor Attitudes and Behavior towards Inherent Risk and Potential Returns in Financial Products, International Research Journal of Finance and Economics, 44, 2010) 4. (Desigan et al. 2006, Women Investors Perception towards Investment: An empirical Study, Indian Journal of Marketing, Vol.6, No.2, pp. 45-56.) 5. (Karthikeyan B. 2001. Small Investors, Perception on Post Office Small Savings Schemes, Unpublished Thesis, Madras University, Tamilnadu, India) 6. (Salam and Kulsum U.2008, Savings behaviour in India: An empirical study, The Indian Economic Journal . 7. (Somasundaram V.K. 1998. A Study on Savings and Investment Pattern of Salaried Class in Coimbatore district. Unpublished Thesis, Bharathiyar University, Coimbatore, Tamilnadu) 8. ( Tamilkodi A.P.P. 1983. Small Savings Schemes in Tamil Nadu: A Trend Study (197080). Unpublished Thesis, University of Madras, Tamilnadu)

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