Mutual Fund Distributor Is Different From an Investment Advisor?

When it’s about differentiating both of them the correct answer is difficult to do, as both help make investment decisions. That involves choosing MF schemes at the same time. Both are the enrolled entities and managed through the different regulatory body. As the Mutual Fund Distributor is under and controlled by AMFI ( The Association of Mutual Funds in India). And the Investment Advisors are controlled by SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India).

Before moving forward first understand an improvement lets discuss that who will be mutual fund distributor and investment advisor is?

Investment Advisor- A Investment Advisor can be an individual or group who give financing and investment advice. Even manages securities analysis so they could earn a fee, whether by direct administration of client assets or by written publications. If they have sufficient assets being enrolled using the SEC is recognised as being a Registered Investment Advisor or RIA. Investment Advisors can also be known as “Financial Advisors”. He/she do the test of the investor’s assets, liabilities, income and expenses and advise investment plan.

Mutual Fund Distributor – They be person or entity facilitating in selling and buying of MF units for the investors. They make money in the form of commission for bringing leads(investors) for committing to MF schemes. He/she is predicted to know the investor’s situation, risk profile and suggest suitable investment intend to meet the investor’s demands.

Getting a commission never signifies that a Mutual Fund distributor is permitted to trade the MF scheme for the investors to get a commission. Well, the regulations have become severe the reason is.

Now let’s discuss 8 points that really help in differentiating from the Mutual fund distributor from Investment Advisor.

Paying mode for advice

We truly realize that mutual fund distributor is enrolled with AMFI, they may be the executors of one’s investments. The investor asks the mutual fund distributor to buy/sell MF plans for him or her. From the process the AMC gives commission to your MFD. To avoid mis-selling of MF plans the SEBI has directed AMCs. To pay only trail commission by utilising the trail-only model. Also, not to ever give any upfront commissions or upfronting of a typical trail commissions straight or secondhand. Even the contests or sponsorships could well be recognised just as one upfront payment. These investment advisors normally charge a fee instead of get commissions from AMC. So using this change in a investors.

Depositary Duty

Distributors vary from advisors inside the sense that advisors are bound by depositary duty. That implies they may be committed to giving investors with honest advice, while distributors are bound by no such promise.

Examination and Certification

The examination exam for both mutual fund distributor and investment advisor are not the same. For MFD get yourself a valid certification with the National Institute of Securities Market(NISM). By clearing their certification examination NISM Series V-A: Mutual Fund Distributors Certification Examination. For Investment Advisor one needs to clear their levels 2 levels:

NISM-Series-X-A: Investment Adviser -Level 1
NISM-Series-X-B: Investment Adviser -Level 2

The mutual fund advisor need to have a certification in financial planning.

Advisers can advise although not distribute

An MFD includes a plus point they can advise to find the best MF schemes. They assist a venture capital company to understand some great benefits of mutual funds, forms of MF and risk factor. They also move the investor regarding the MF investment and match the investors demands. After that, they ask the investor to take a position money in mutual funds. They keep distributing the mutual fund’s plan. The Investment advisors give suggestions about which MF to take a position but cannot work like a distributor. Their duty is simply to advise. After that its investors choice but distributor be sure that investor does purchase mutual funds.

Duties differentiation

Apart because of this, the central focus of any mutual fund distributor could be the distribution in the funds. Whereas the job of any MF, the advisor involves several other duties.

Helping the investor change his/her portfolio
Evaluating risk-taking capacity funds
Choosing the proper investment option

Direct plan vs Regular plan

A Mutual fund distributor will offer Investor regular plan and get them to speculate in exactly the same. But the Investment Advisors advice a venture capital company to spend money on direct plans. In in the evening MF had for being purchased beneath the guidance of distributors, there wasn’t any different option. But in January 2013, SEBI mandated the AMCs to start out direct plans in the mutual funds. This enables the advisors to not only advise investors but in addition assist them to take a position in direct MF plans. Direct plans possess a more economical expense ratio compared to regular plans. So while distributors may fascinate you on the regular plans because of their commissions, advisors will not likely.

Take into outline their degree of gathering relevant information differs

Recognizing the requirement to find general info on your financial profile, will be the base of a good financial planning. It is consequently essential to guarantee how the person you’re trusting with for finances, is interested to question important questions. Like about your goals, income, expenses, long and short-term goals, assets, liabilities, tax status etc. They must provide need-based intends to reach your financial goals, rather of product-based advice. While MFD may well discuss your demands with products they may be commissioned to advertise. A financial advisor is anticipated to offer unbiased advice to match your necessities.

Discussing the factor of risk and returns

This factor is generally discussed with the advisor in a very great manner as opposed to Investment advisor. He/she will discuss the danger factors for MF I.e high, low, moderate etc. Then he can look out for MF scheme performance in past years. After that will suggest you spend money on the plan. The investment advisor ask the distributor to convenience the investor to speculate in plan particular MF plan they can be looking for only to meet their financial need. An advisor can be more interested in evaluating your risk appetite. Also, setting the right expectation with concerns to results.


It’s quite tricky to say a mutual fund distributor is important or adviser. Both are an essential source for the best investment in mutual funds. From the MF regulation view- all persons including companies, who get AMFI certification number (ARN), are mutual fund distributors, on the highest towards the smallest. In the way of distributing the MF schemes of numerous AMCs, in addition they need advice in lots of ways – scheme selection, asset allocation, tax planning etc, all inside scope of MF schemes. So its all investor choice that she directly desires to contact a distributor or want advice for mutual funds.

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