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Direct Vs Regular Mutual Fund Investment Plans

Updated on April 22, 2024 , 2980 views

While most of the investors invest in Mutual Funds through regular plans, but the rising popularity of direct plans amongst the new investors has led to an increase in demand. Regular plans have been available to the investors for a much longer time than direct Investment plan. The first direct mutual fund plan got introduced in January 1, 2013.


So, for a fair understanding between regular vs direct Mutual Funds, here’s a comparative article that would guide you in choosing the right plan, as per your investment needs.

Regular Vs Direct : Know the Difference

The regular plans and direct plans are not two different schemes, but in fact, they are variants of the same principal scheme offered by AMCs. Both the plans- direct and regular, prominently differs in some parameters that are:

a. Distribution

An investor can buy a mutual fund with a regular plan through various routes like brokers, RTAs such as CAMS, Karvy, third-party securities Market intermediaries, directly through the AMC as well as through various representative offices of the fund house. While, direct plans can be bought through limited platforms - a very few third-party securities intermediaries, RTAs such as CAMS/Karvy, and authorized local representatives of the fund house. But, since many prefer to consider buying Mutual Fund Online, both direct and regular plans are available via the online mode as well as the physical/paper-based mode.

b. Expense Ratio

One of the main reasons why direct plans look attractive is due to its lower expense ratio. Mutual funds with regular plans have higher expense ratios compared to direct plans. The lower expense ratio results from the fact that direct plans don’t incur any agent commissions or distributor fees that are payable to brokers or distribution agents of the regular mutual fund schemes. Due to which, the potential returns offered by the direct mutual fund schemes are higher than that of mutual funds with regular plans. The lower expense ratio of direct plans is gaining attraction of the investors, especially amongst new investors.

c. NAV

In mutual fund investment, the value of the investment is expressed as the fund’s Asset Under Management (AUM). As direct mutual plans have a lower expense ratio, the saving in commissions is added to the return of the scheme in for of a higher NAV (Net Asset Value) each day.

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Therefore, the NAV of a direct plan is relatively higher as compared to regular plans.

Parameters Regular Plans Direct Plans
Convenience More Less
NAV Lower Higher
Expense ratio Higher (commission to the intermediary) Lower
Returns Less as the AMC fee is more More as the expense ratio is lesser

Best Direct Mutual Fund Plans

Investors who want to invest in mutual funds with direct plans, here are some of the best performing direct mutual funds as per highest AUM.

FundNAVNet Assets (Cr)3 MO (%)6 MO (%)1 YR (%)3 YR (%)5 YR (%)2023 (%)
Franklin Build India Fund - Direct Growth ₹144.294
↑ 0.76
L&T Infrastructure Fund - Direct Growth ₹47.2753
↑ 0.48
Franklin India Smaller Companies Fund - Direct Growth ₹176.698
↑ 1.06
Templeton India Growth Fund - Direct Growth ₹717.467
↑ 4.14
Sundaram SMILE Fund - Direct Growth ₹250.252
↑ 0.06
Franklin India Opportunities Fund - Direct Growth ₹230.439
↑ 1.13
DSP BlackRock Micro Cap Fund - Direct Growth ₹183.173
↑ 1.50
SBI Small Cap Fund - Direct Growth ₹179.533
↑ 1.32
Templeton India Equity Income Fund - Direct Growth ₹137.755
↑ 1.25
L&T Business Cycles Fund - Direct Growth ₹39.3914
↑ 0.23
Note: Returns up to 1 year are on absolute basis & more than 1 year are on CAGR basis. as on 24 Apr 24

Best Regular Mutual Fund Plans

Investors who want to invest in mutual funds with regular plans, here are some of the best performing regular plans to invest in.

FundNAVNet Assets (Cr)3 MO (%)6 MO (%)1 YR (%)3 YR (%)5 YR (%)2023 (%)
SBI PSU Fund Growth ₹30.3912
↑ 0.42
ICICI Prudential Infrastructure Fund Growth ₹171.84
↑ 1.20
HDFC Infrastructure Fund Growth ₹43.562
↑ 0.24
Nippon India Power and Infra Fund Growth ₹322.65
↑ 2.14
Invesco India PSU Equity Fund Growth ₹57.93
↑ 0.75
DSP BlackRock India T.I.G.E.R Fund Growth ₹286.687
↑ 3.09
Franklin Build India Fund Growth ₹127.1
↑ 0.66
Motilal Oswal Midcap 30 Fund  Growth ₹81.999
↓ -0.27
IDFC Infrastructure Fund Growth ₹46.192
↑ 0.54
SBI Infrastructure Fund Growth ₹47.4949
↑ 0.25
Note: Returns up to 1 year are on absolute basis & more than 1 year are on CAGR basis. as on 24 Apr 24

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All efforts have been made to ensure the information provided here is accurate. However, no guarantees are made regarding correctness of data. Please verify with scheme information document before making any investment.
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