Kotak Securities Review: Is This The Right Demat Provider For You?

Kotak Securities is a veteran when it comes to trading. The company was launched in 1994, two years before the National Stock Exchange (NSE) introduced the concept of dematerialized (demat) accounts. With over 2.5 million customer accounts, Kotak Securities is now one of the leading demat providers in India. For this Kotak Securities review, we will take a look at this platform to help you assess if it’s the right match for your trading.

Background of Kotak Securities

Kotak Securities review

Kotak Securities is the brokerage arm of the Kotak Mahindra Bank. They are a full-service brokerage firm that offers investment products like mutual funds, currencies, bonds, IPOs, ETFs, and more.

As one of the oldest trading firms in India, Kotak Securities have tied up with multiple brokers in the country. They also provide Indians access to various American markets.

As of 2019, Kotak Securities have 152 branches in India as well as 1,510 franchisees. They also have coverage in 360 cities all over India.

Overall, Kotak Securities offer a diverse trading platform as well as one of the widest knowledge base of all demat providers.

As proof of their credibility, Kotak Securities are a member of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). They are also a depository participant at the Central Depository Services Limited (CDSL) and the National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL).

Here’s a quick look at Kotak Securities Trade Free Plan that comes with a free demat:


Pros and cons of Kotak Securities

Advantages of Kotak Securities

  • Trinity account. Kotak Securities offers what they call the ‘Trinity Account’, which is their version of the 3-in-1 demat account. It’s a bank account, trading account, and demat account in one, so you only have to access one platform for all your investments. This isn’t surprising since Kotak Securities is part of the Kotak Mahindra Bank, similar to the setup of SBI Securities.
  • NRI account. Another great thing about Kotak Securities is they offer NRI or Non-Resident Indian accounts. So even if you’re not in India, you can still invest in the country’s stock market. It’s also a 3-in-1 demat account paired with a massive knowledge base, courtesy of the Kotak Securities Academy.
  • Research and knowledge base. Kotak Securities offers a ton of trading tools, research reports, and value-added features for all its customers. This makes them a great choice for both beginners and expert traders.
  • Stocks as margins. At Kotak Securities, you can use your stocks as margins instead of cash. This gives you more trading potential, especially if you’re a skilled trader.
  • Free trading software. Once you’ve opened your 3-in-1 demat account with Kotak, you will have full access to their trading software.
  • Zero fees on intraday trades. Kotak Securities will not charge you for any intraday rates. They also have a fixed rate of Rs 20 for each F&O order, which is similar to what discount stock brokers offer.
  • Free trading plan. Kotak Securities used to offer their trading account for Rs 499, but you’ll now get it for free! However, it’s only offered for a limited period, so make sure you sign up as soon as possible to enjoy this perk.
  • Customer satisfaction guarantee on the free plan. Even if you have a free trading account, you’re still entitled to the customer satisfaction guarantee from Kotak Securities.
  • Zero AMC for small holdings. Just recently, Kotak Securities announced that they will now waive annual maintenance charges for holdings below Rs 10,000. This makes the platform friendlier for small-time traders.

Disadvantages of Kotak Securities

  • Higher monthly maintenance charge. While the trading and demat accounts are free, you’ll have to pay Rs 50 monthly as a maintenance charge. This will compound to Rs 600 each year. For many, this looks a bit too steep.
  • Poor support on commodity segment. If you’re trading commodity segments, support from Kotak Securities is a bit problematic.
  • Higher brokerage fees. Compared to discount brokers, Kotak Securities charge slightly higher fees. This can be a make-or-break part for many potential customers.

Is Kotak Securities the right choice for me?

If you want to start trading with a free account, Kotak Securities is definitely for you. They also offer a 3-in-1 demat for both residents and NRIs, which is a big plus.

However, you should know that since they are part of a commercial bank. This means their brokerages are slightly higher than other platforms like Zerodha. But based on our assessment, Kotak Securities almost have the same fees as SBI Securities, which is owned by the state bank.

Also, Kotak Securities make a great platform for those who want to dive deep into trading. They even have what they call ‘Kotak University’. Here, you can access training modules for every investment product they offer.

Aside from that, this demat provider has tools like a margin calculator, trading APIs, Nest Trading Terminal, and more. It’s one of the most comprehensive knowledge bases I’ve seen on a brokerage firm. Besides, the company claims to provide in-depth trade research to which they seem to be thriving.

And if you want stability, Kotak Securities is one of the best picks. They have been around since 1994, longer than other providers like Zerodha, Upstox, and even SBI Securities.

A proven track record paired with a robust trading technology – I don’t see why Kotak Securities won’t be a good choice.

How to sign up to a Kotak Securities demat account

With Kotak Securities, you have three options. First, you can open a 3-in-1 demat account, inclusive of demat, trading, and savings accounts.

If you already have a savings account, you can also opt for a 2-in-1 account, which is a combination of demat and trading accounts.

Lastly, you can open a standalone trading account if you already have a demat and savings account.

Aside from that, you can choose from three different demat types in Kotak Securities, which are as follows:

  • Regular demat. This is made for Indian citizens that come with a regular savings bank account. However, you can’t use this to transfer funds abroad.
  • Repatriable demat. This demat account is made for NRIs or non-Indian residents. To open this, you need an active NRE or non-resident external account. This can be used for international fund transfers.
  • Non-repatriable demat. This is also made for NRIs, but it requires an NRO or non-resident ordinary account instead of an NRE. However, unlike the repatriable demat, you can’t use this for international fund transfers.

Whatever you choose to open, here are the general steps you need to take:

  • Next, fill out your name, mobile number, and city. After that, click the ‘Open Free Account’ button. You’ll have to enter the verification code sent to your mobile number.
  • You’ll be prompted to enter basic personal details to proceed with the signup process.
  • Next, you’ll be directed to the Digi Locker, where you’ll need to upload all scanned copies of necessary documents. This includes copies of your PAN card, Aadhaar card, signature specimen, and canceled cheque leaf.
  • You’ll be asked to choose the segments you want to trade.
  • The last step is to take your photo through the camera feature on the page. Make sure that you have a working camera on your device.
  • For the Trinity Demat Account, you need to call or visit a Kotak Securities branch near you.

Once done, you’ll have to wait for around two weeks for your demat account to be made. This is quite a long time compared to the likes of Upstox. Nevertheless, this is quite reasonable for most demat providers under big banks.

As for broking or trading accounts, they can be made and used on the same day. However, this depends on the branch where you opened it, the requirements being asked, and so on.

Kotak Securities charges and fees

Many customers often complain about Kotak Securities’ higher brokerage rates. But based on the recent moves by the company, it seems like they are poised to become a discount broker. This is truly possible now that they have waived their trading account fees.

But as of now, customers should be aware of these standard charges by Kotak Securities:

RATES FOR THE TRADE FREE PLAN

SegmentsRates
Equity Delivery0.25%
Equity IntradayFree
Equity OptionsRs 39 per lot
Commodity Options0.25%
Currency OptionsRs 20 per delivery (free on intraday)
Equity OptionsRs 20 per delivery (free on intraday)
Equity FuturesRs 20 per delivery (free on intraday)
Currency FuturesRs 20 per delivery (free on intraday)
Commodity FuturesRs 20 per delivery (free on intraday)

RATES FOR THE DEALER ASSISTED PLAN

SegmentsRates
Equity Intraday0.039%
Equity Delivery0.39%
Equity Futures0.039%
Currency FuturesRs 9 per lot
Commodity Futures0.039%
Equity OptionsRs 30 per lot
Currency OptionsRs 5 per lot
Commodity OptionsRs 39 per lot

Aside from these brokerages, you’ll also pay Rs 150 per certificate if you request dematerialization. This is aside from the additional Rs 50 request fee and courier charges.       

Kotak Securities customer service

When it comes to customer service, you can reach Kotak Securities through these channels:

  • WhatsApp: 77389 88888
  • Phone: 1800 209 9191
  • Email: ks.demat@kotak.com

Take note that their call center services are only available from 9 am to 6 pm. Meanwhile, chat services are open from 8 am to 8 pm. As for their Call and Trade, you can only do so from 8:30 am to 5: 30 pm during business days (Monday to Friday).

Another thing customers should know is that they are entitled to a refund of brokerage fees under specific conditions. You can request a refund if you’re not happy with Kotak Securities within one month after your account has been opened.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is Kotak Securities safe?

A: Kotak Securities is guaranteed safe, thanks to its high-level encryption technology. It uses multiple security layers to protect your account from hackers and attackers. As one of India’s most reputable brokerage firms, Kotak Securities takes pride in its reliable platform.

Q: What is the minimum balance required in Kotak Securities?

A: There’s no minimum balance required for a Kotak Securities trading/demat account. You can have zero balance at any given point. However, if you’re trading futures and options, you’ll have better leverage if you’ll maintain a specific amount.

Q: How can I transfer my demat account from Kotak Securities to Zerodha?

A: If you wish to switch to Zerodha, you have to close your Kotak demat account first. After it’s closed, you need to send a Delivery Instruction Slip (DIS) to your present broker. The depository will then transfer your investments to your new demat account. Take note that the process and requirements will vary per provider.

Q: Can I have more than one demat account?

A: Yes, you can open multiple demat accounts. Just make sure that you have your PAN card ready. You can open a demat account in Kotak Securities and another in a discount broker if you want to diversify your portfolio.

Q: Is Kotak Securities good for trading?

A: Yes, Kotak Securities is a good option for traders. Like SBI Securities, they offer a 3-in-1 demat account in partnership with the Kotak Mahindra Bank. It’s a seamless choice if you want a one-stop platform for all your trading needs.

Q: Can I buy today and sell tomorrow in Kotak Securities?

A: Kotak Securities offer the BNST service, which stands for Buy Now Sell Tomorrow. However, you’re fully responsible for any shortfall that may occur during delivery. Naturally, this comes at a certain risk, but traders will surely find it a good way to leverage their investments.

Final words

Kotak Securities is a trusted demat and trading provider. As part of the Kotak Mahindra Bank, you’re assured of its credibility and reliability. We hope that this Kotak Securities review helps you weigh the pros and cons of this provider and if it’s the right choice for you.

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