Opening an account takes only a few minutes through the Winvesta app. With our instant KYC, you will ready to start investing in the US equities in no time.
We can accept citizens or NRIs from UAE, Qatar, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Bahrain, and Israel. We will soon also be able to accept clients from the UK and many European countries.
To get started, download the app, fill in the first few screens, and then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for document submission. We will need an ID proof and address proof.
You will have to make a wire transfer to your brokerage/multi-currency account from your bank account. You may use a bank in India, or overseas to fund the account. Please note that the funds must be transferred from an account in your name, otherwise they will get rejected by the broker-dealer.
Your brokerage account needs to be funded in USD. Your bank will convert domestic currency into USD during the transfer.
Many Indian banks like ICICI, HDFC, IDFC First, Kotak, and Indus Ind allow a complete digital transfer of funds from your account up to USD 25,000. We have detailed instructions and pre-filled forms available to make it convenient for you to fund your account.
You will need your PAN card and Aadhaar card to open an account. You will be able to scan these from the app during the registration process. You may take a picture of the soft copy of the documents if you don’t have physical documents available. To use other ID/address documents, you may contact support when you are at the ID verification step, and we can collect alternate documents through other secure methods.
You may withdraw money from your brokerage account to your multi-currency account (coming soon) or remit it back to your Indian bank account. To do so, go to the accounts section on the app and select ‘transfer/withdraw’.
Please note that any money you remit back to India will need to be re-counted in your LRS limit if you wish to remit it overseas again. As an example let’s say you sent $250,000 to your US brokerage account in May 2020. In December 2020 you withdraw $300,000 back to India. Since you have already used your LRS limit for 2020-21, you can not remit money overseas till March 2021. You may remit up to $250,000 overseas again only in April 2021. Moreover, the money will be converted to INR when repatriated back to India (which means unnecessary charges if you want to convert it to foreign currency again). On the other hand if you withdraw this money into your integrated Winvesta multi-currency account, you can reinvest it in any foreign asset. In FY 2021-22 you will be able to invest another $250,000 in international assets, in addition to these $300,000.
For trading US securities, one does not need a US bank account. Winvesta will facilitate the creation of a US brokerage account with our SEC-registered broker partner. Users will be provided a two-in-one brokerage account which will have a trading account and a Demat (custodian) account. You can transfer money from India straight to your US-based brokerage account and trade securities using those funds.
Alternatively, Winvesta offers an integrated international multi-currency account (coming soon) which has an International Bank Account Number (IBAN) assigned to it. You may withdraw the money from your brokerage account and transfer to this account when you want to liquidate your stock investments. The multi-currency account allows you to invest in other international assets, without transferring the money back to India.
There is currently a $5 minimum cash balance requirement in the brokerage account to cover fees for any shares you may need to sell after the free trades.
Apart from that, there is no minimum amount that you need to start investing with. However, we recommend starting with a minimum of ₹ 25,000 (~ $350).
You can invest in most of the listed US securities. The full list can be seen here. Certain ADRs of Indian companies are excluded due to RBI regulations.
Some international banks, especially those in the Middle East, use an intermediary that may charge for the transfer. While initiating the remittance, you may want to verify the guaranteed amount that reaches the beneficiary. Winvesta and DriveWealth do not charge for any incoming transfers.
Not anymore! Historically, the channels to invest overseas have been expensive and difficult to access for retail investors. With Winvesta, Indian residents can start building a global portfolio with as little as they want and invest as much as USD 250,000 per year (LRS limit).
An ETF or Exchange-Traded Fund is a collection of assets like stocks, bonds, or commodities that are often designed to track an index, sector or investment strategy. They are like mutual funds, but can be traded on an exchange just like stocks, and often have much lower fees compared to mutual funds. For example the SPDR S&P 500 ETF tracks the S&P 500 index which is a market-capitalization-weighted index of the 500 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S.
Fractional shares are less than one full share of equity in a company. Many stocks are priced very high for small investors which can make stock ownership in that company out of reach. Fractional shares give investors the ability to trade any fraction or dollar value in a listed company. For example, you may buy fractional shares worth $50 in Amazon or buy 0.05 shares of Netflix, which are otherwise priced much higher. Our brokerage partner allows you to invest in as little as 0.0001 shares of any stock.
This makes you think in terms of the amount of money you want to invest in a company, irrespective of what the share price is. So if a stock is priced at $40, and you want to invest $100 in it, you will receive 2.5 shares of the stock.
Note that you do not get voting rights on the fractional shares that you own. You will still have the voting right for each full share that you own in the same company. Dividends, however, are distributed proportional to the fraction of the share that you own, rounded down to the nearest cent.
Think of Winvesta like your international 3-in-1 account, where the multi-currency account forms the base of all your overseas investments including the brokerage account. You can fund different investments like fractional real estate investing, fixed deposits, angel investing, crowdfunding, etc. along with your US brokerage account from this account. You can receive passive income, rebates and interest in this account, which you can reinvest into other assets. This account helps you diversify and plan your investments, and also allows for goal based investing like saving for international student education or retirement in a specific geography. As an example, if you plan to send your child to study in the UK for higher education, the multi-currency account lets you convert and hold money in British Pounds (GBP), which you can also invest in a ETF in the UK. It also protects you against INR depreciation versus the GBP and you can remit money systematically over a few years, rather than a lump sum payment. Similarly, if you wish to retire in France, you can remit money periodically to your integrated Euro account, buy a property in France and keep collecting any rental income from that in your Winvesta Euro account. In essence, you can start planning for your future international liabilities without worrying about the INR depreciation, or the annual LRS limits.
Also note that when you liquidate any international investments and remit the proceeds back to India, it doesn’t add it back to your LRS quota for the year. As an example let’s say you sent $250,000 to your US brokerage account in May 2020. In December 2020 you repatriate$300,000 back to India. Since you have already used your LRS limit for 2020-21, you can not remit money overseas till March 2021. You may remit up to $250,000 overseas again only in April 2021. On the other hand if you withdraw this money into your integrated Winvesta multi-currency account, you can reinvest it in any foreign asset. In FY 2021-22 you will be able to invest another $250,000 in international assets, in addition to these $300,000.
Tax implications of investing in US stocks are actually quite straight-forward. There is no income tax on capital gains in the US for non-US Persons. You will however have to pay capital gains tax in India, which will depend on the duration of the investment (Short term capital gains tax for investments held for less than 24 months, long term capital gains otherwise). If you receive a dividend, your tax liability in the US would be a flat 25% (lower than otherwise for a foreign investor due to the tax treaty between the US and India). This tax will be withheld before you receive the dividend, which means that you will receive 75% of the dividend as a cash payout. The good news is that you will receive foreign tax credits for the US tax, which you can utilize against your tax liability in India (as US and India have Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement). You will be able to download your tax documents right from the Winvesta app.
Disclaimer: Winvesta does not provide any tax advice and you should consult your tax advisor for specific details. Tax is subject to individual circumstances.
Unfortunately, RBI doesn’t allow margin trading or any derivatives trading with the money sent under the LRS scheme.
Investing in pre-IPO and IPO subscriptions is not available as of now. However, we can make stocks available on our platform shortly after they are listed on a US exchange.
A good faith violation occurs if a stock/ETF purchased in your cash account is sold prior to being paid for with settled funds in the account. Accounts with three good faith violations in a 12-month period will be restricted to purchasing securities with settled cash only for a period of 12 months.
Read more about GFV here.
Yes! Under the Liberalized Remittance Scheme (LRS), Indian citizens can remit and invest up to USD 250,000 per financial year. Remitting money outside India under this scheme is perfectly legal.
Liberalized Remittance Scheme (LRS), of RBI allows Indian resident individuals to remit up to USD 250,000 per financial year to another country for investments and expenditure. This limit is per individual including minors, which means that a family of 4 can remit up to USD 1 million per financial year. This quota includes any investments like US securities, real estate, and bank deposits, etc. and all expenses like foreign travel, and student education.
Winvesta Ltd is an Appointed Representative of RiskSave Technologies Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with FRN 775330. FCA is the financial services regulator for the United Kingdom. FCA is one of the world’s most respected and progressive regulators.
We work with other entities globally, including those regulated by the SEC (US regulator), the Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA, that regulates banking in the UK) and the FCA.
You own the shares and all your investments/accounts. The accounts are opened in your name with your credentials and belong to you. The brokerage account is held with DriveWealth – an SEC-registered and FINRA regulated broker and you may verify the ownership of your account and shares by contacting them at email@example.com. DriveWealth uses Velox Clearing/Citibank as a custodian where your shares are held in street name.
For your US trading account, your money will be held in a brokerage account provided by DriveWealth – a FINRA and SEC regulated brokerage firm. The brokerage firm is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), which protects the securities and cash in your account up to $500,000 of which upto $250,000 may be in cash. However, SIPC does not protect against market risk and general losses in the stock market.
For the international bank account, your cash is safeguarded at reputable British high street banks, under the e-money regulations
Investments made in equity or other instruments are subjected to market risks. User is the holder of the entire risk on the investments. Your capital is at risk and you may lose some or all of your investment. Investment in a certain class of assets may be deemed safer than the other, but all investments are subjected to price fluctuations depending on their riskiness. Riskier assets may yield higher returns, but this may not always be true. Users are required to make their assessments before investing in instruments. Nature and risk profile of different instruments may be different from others, and users are required to make their independent assessment of such risks.
Users seeking moderate returns can opt for safer securities and may choose to create a diversified portfolio. Diversification is often used to protect the portfolio against the concentration of risk in a specific basket. Such practices can protect the investor against the sudden movement in a particular sector or asset class.
Your global investing accounts are held by brokerage and clearing services providers in your name. Your stocks and other securities are held with a custodian in your name. If Winvesta goes down, your accounts will still be safe and secure.
Your brokerage account is also insured by the SIPC which protects the securities and cash in your account up to $500,000 of which upto $250,000 may be in cash.
Winvesta’s brokerage partner, DriveWealth, is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (“SIPC”) which currently protects the securities and cash in your account up to USD 500,000, of which USD 250,000 may be in cash.
Please note that this USD 500,000 is not applicable to the general losses in the stock market.
SIPC says the following: SIPC protects against the loss of cash and securities – such as stocks and bonds – held by a customer at a financially-troubled SIPC-member brokerage firm. The limit of SIPC protection is $500,000, which includes a $250,000 limit for cash. A non-U.S. citizen with an account at a brokerage firm that is a member of SIPC is treated the same as a resident or citizen of the United States.
SIPC does not protect against the decline in the value of your securities. SIPC does not protect individuals who are sold worthless stocks and other securities. SIPC does not protect claims against a broker for bad investment advice, or for recommending inappropriate investments.
Explanatory brochure available upon request or at www.sipc.org.
If you already have a US brokerage account with Drivewealth through some other platform, you can transfer your shares and cash to your Winvesta account. The process is digital and very simple and takes no more than 1 day to process.
For transfer out of India to brokerage or the integrated bank account, the forex rate and fee is determined by the bank that you use to transfer the money. For moving money between your brokerage and multi-currency accounts, we provide the most competitive rates on our platform.
If you want to withdraw the money from your brokerage account directly to your domestic Indian bank account, the FX rates are determined by the receiving bank in India. There is a $35 international wire transfer fee charged for international transfers. We are working on getting this reduced substantially in the near future.
The only fees that Winvesta charges you can be found on our pricing page. Besides that, there are fees that our partners charge for extra services such as international wire transfer, or transfer of securities to another broker, etc. We do not take any portion of that fee and are working to reduce or remove them in the near future. Those fees can be found here.
There are no monthly charges or Annual Maintenance Charges (AMC) for the brokerage account.
Yes. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will be happy to add a nominee in your DriveWealth account.
We take pride in offering a delightful experience to our clients. Our customer delight team makes sure every query is tracked and closed to satisfaction.
All the calls made by our customer delight team are also recorded for quality assurance, and training purposes, and are regularly reviewed by the management.