Stock Markets

How NRIs can trade in the Indian stock market

nri trading in india

The NRI trading community finds it quite difficult to participate in the Indian stock market for various reasons. The pain point begins with the lack of clarity on how to get started and complications surrounding NRE & NRO account. Due to the lack of awareness on the part of both the stockbrokers and willing traders, the participation has been tepid for a long time. At Fyers, we understand this and we’re doing our bit to make things simple and easy for NRIs to trade. In this post, I will explain all the important things that an NRI needs to know before getting started. To trade in Indian Stock Markets, NRIs should open a savings bank account in India. NRIs often face a situation of maintaining a Rupee account in India.

A glimpse on how an NRI can get started in Indian Stock Markets:

nri trading india

Step 1: Open an NRE/NRO savings bank account
An NRI has an option of opening a Non Resident Rupee (NRE) account and/or a Non Resident Ordinary Rupee (NRO) account. Take note that an NRO account can also be opened by a Person of Indian Origin (PIO) and an overseas citizen of India (OCI).

Difference between NRE & NRO account:
1. Repatriation: NRE account holder may repatriate all the funds along with the interest earned at any point of time without having to pay tax on the interest amount. Any NRI can open an NRE account. While in case of NRO account holders, they can repatriate up to $1 million per year including principle & interest.
2. Tax Treatment: NRE account is Tax free (no Income tax, wealth tax and gift tax) in India. On the other hand the interest earned and credit balances in NRO account are subject to respective income tax bracket and are also subject to applicable wealth and gift tax.
3. Joint Holding: NRE account can be jointly held with another NRI but not with resident Indian. On the other hand NRO account can be held with NRI as well as resident Indian.

Step 2: Getting a PIS letter from the bank
Before getting the PIS letter, it is important to understand what it really means. PIS stands for Portfolio Investment Scheme. NRIs can purchase/sell shares or convertible debentures under portfolio Investment Scheme (PIS). This letter acts as an approval from RBI to the client to invest in Indian Stock Markets. The process of getting this letter will be taken care of by the bank where you open your savings bank account.

Step 3: Open a Trading & Demat account with broker & connect the PIS letter with the same
You can use account opening forms (Trading + Demat account) from our downloads page. When you open an account with us, you have to provide the PIS letter for the link up. Before printing any account opening forms, do get in touch with us.

Procedure to open an account with us:
1. Document ensuring status of entity
a. In case of Indian passport – Valid passport, Place of birth as India
b. Valid Visa – Work/Student/employment/resident permit etc.
c. In case of foreign passport : Valid passport and any of the following
i. Place of Birth as India in foreign passport
ii. Copy of PIO / OCI Card as applicable in case of PIO/OCI
2. Copy of PIS Permission Letter from the respective designated bank
3. Copy of PAN card
4. Overseas address proof – Copy of Driving License/Foreign Passport/Utility Bills/Bank Statement (not more than 2 months)/Notarized copy of rent agreement/Leave & License agreement/ Sale Deed
5. Indian address proof, if any
6. Passport size photographs
7. Proof of Bank account (a canceled cheque leaf of your NRE or NRO savings bank account)

Step 4: Allocate funds to your PIS account
When the trading account is open with us, you can proceed to trade in Indian stock markets. Procedure to take positions:
1. Allocate funds from your NRE/NRO account to PIS account.
2. The amount which you transferred to the savings bank account is updated in your terminal when the bank informs the same to the broker (FYERS).
3. Your PIS account is debited with the amount of buy positions you take & the same is credited to the brokers account.
4. Similarly, your PIS account is credited with the amount you make from selling positions at the end of the day.
5. Note that two separate contract notes are sent for all your buy transactions and sell transactions at the end of every day. The net amount credited/debited to your PIS will be including all charges that appear on the contract note.

Instruments that an NRI can trade:
a. NRI can purchase securities by subscribing to public issue.
b. He/she cannot take intraday transaction in cash segment.
c. NRIs are allowed to invest in futures & options segment of the exchange out of Rupee funds held in India on non-repatriation basis, subject to the limits prescribed by SEBI.
d. NRI cannot trade in Currency derivative segment of the Exchange.

NRI trading at FYERS
Clients who wish to trade with us are requested to open NRO account with Yes Bank as we are associated with them as of now. We shall tie-up with more banks in the future depending on the benefits that each bank provides to NRI clients.

Brokerage Fees:
Our brokerage charges are the cheapest for NRIs in the Indian stockbroking Industry, we charge a flat fee of ₹100 per transaction for all segments. To open an NRI account, please leave your details here. For more help and clarification during the account opening process, do reach us at support@fyers.in.

Things to keep in mind:
1. Stock holding of an NRI can’t exceed 10% in any Indian listed company.
2. Short-term capital gains: 15% on any gain made on stocks sold before 1 year.
3. Any long term gain out of stocks, if held for more than a year are totally exempt for tax.
4. If you wish to map both NRE/NRO accounts with the trading account, you have to take 2 client ID’s with the broker.
5. When you make money in the F&O segment, it is considered as business income as per Income Tax department of India.

Feel free to seek clarifications in the comments section below.

Tejas Khoday

Tejas Khoday

Tejas is the Co-Founder & CEO at FYERS, the youngest team to get NSE’s broker license. He has a specialization in finance and has over 10 years of work experience spanning across proprietary trading, risk management, and broking. Tejas & his team started FYERS, a technology-focused brokerage as a mission to transform the trading/investment landscape in India.

87 Comments

  • Avatar PRC says:

    DUDE! I am so excited right now after reading this! Thaaaaankkk you!

  • Avatar Akbar Shaikh says:

    I live in UAE but have Indian KYC documents, is it possible to open account as a resident of India?

  • Avatar Rizwan Shaikh says:

    I am an NRI living in UAE. I register for the account opening in FYERS but one of your executives told me that currently your guys are not opening the NRI accounts. Then when can I expect it to start?

  • Avatar Arun Divakar says:

    when Fyers is going to enable trading for NRIs? why did you disable it?

  • Avatar Sudheer Singh says:

    Hi, i am currently holding NRO PIS account with Axis bank @ Dubai. Do operating my Demat account with them. But, i would like to transfer the holding and day to day transactions to some other third party because of higher transaction charges. Will it be possible to do so? what are the documents that i need to submit to do so with Fyers.

  • Avatar Girish says:

    As I read on NSE website, NRI can trade in F&O. Is it possible to settle any position taken in options of stock/nifty/bank-nifty intraday during the same day ?

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      NRI trading has become a cumbersome task for us and we’re not actively pursuing it at the moment until the entire ecosystem functions seamlessly. We’ll re-introduce our NRI services in the future.

  • Avatar Anurag Desai says:

    Hello Tejas, if FYERS is starting PMS keep me informed. I am settled in New Zealand for the last few years and have been reading a lot about investing in India but not really sure about how to do it. A few years back I sold my apartment in Kolkata and don’t own real estate in India but would like to invest in REIT and PMS. By the way, I saw the comments section riddled with some kyc issues of sorts. Hope all that has been sorted out by now.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi Anurag, that’s quite a bit of self-disclosure. We don’t yet offer PMS services as our current focus is completely on providing a stable and robust trading platform. The thing with NRI account opening is that the process is extremely cumbersome for the client and us. As a regulated entity, we have to follow all the rules set upon us by the exchanges, KYC agencies, SEBI and RBI (In the case of NRI bank accounts).

  • Avatar veena says:

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  • Avatar Shajeeb says:

    I am an NRI based in Dubai and want to invest in India through PMS. Does FYERS do PMS Servives through PIS account? I don’t have time to do it directly and i feel mfs give less returns that’s why. I can’t see PMS option in your website.

  • Avatar Darshan Parikh says:

    Hi Tejas and Team,
    With knowledge of the RBI guideline for the non-PIS route, I want to present a scenario and want your comment on it.
    I am an NRI living in the US. I want to invest in IPOs and trade in Indian Stock Markets just like a resident. I am planning to open NRO Savings a/c with Axis/HDFC bank. If I open a regular(resident) trading & demat account with you and link them with NRO Savings a/c, can you handle TDS reporting in this scenario? Would you be able to work with Axis/HDFC NRO Savings a/c? If possible explain non-PIS route services you offer with regular demat and trading account.

    P.S.: From my understanding, I have come to know that despite RBI guideline for the non-PIS route, brokers are not able to offer trading services on regular trading/demat account linked with NRO Savings a/c due to TDS hassle. Correct me if I am wrong.

  • Brijesh_VGowda says:

    If NSE simplifies accountopening procedure for NRIs, then I am sure that Fyers will get huge market share.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      NSE does not decide all the procedures. For NRI accounts, everyone is involved:
      1. SEBI
      2. NSE/BSE which follow SEBI norms.
      3. Bank which is required to open an NRE/NRO account.
      4. RBI (Since it involves foreign exchange).
      5. Official Gazette in the foreign country who needs to certify stuff.

  • Ashutosh says:

    I want Fyers to be the top broker in India. Fyers Web is much better than Zerodha Kite.. I realised after using.. Wonderful charts.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi, we are working towards it. Lots of new things coming up soon! Well thanks for the compliments, but will refrain on commenting on our competitor here.

  • Ashutosh says:

    Fyers your 30 day challenge rocks!

  • Balwinder says:

    Very useful and informative blog.. I have tried to open NRI account but I am informed that the procedure is very tedious by different brokers. Is it because of the account opening procedures are too long and complicated? I have the interest to start, but just wanted to clarify because I have heard from many people that your trading platforms are one of the best in India.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Thanks Balwinder, honestly the account opening procedures for NRI is a bit tedious. There’s little we can do about this because of the regulatory requirements. We have tried to simplify it as much as possible from our end. Glad you’ve heard great reviews about our platform. We spend most of our time trying to improve the trading/investing experience for everyone. Will look forward to you joining us..

  • Avatar Ravish says:

    I was an NRi and when I was, I had opened an NRI account with Yes Bank, can I use the same account to link to Fyers trading account? I want to shift my broker to fyers with immediate effect.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi Ravish, Yes you can link the existing Yes Bank account to your Fyers Trading account. In fact, we are tied up with Yes bank for such services.

  • Avatar Aneesh says:

    Thanks for the informative post. While doing my research, I came across an article that said that if we hold an NRO account, then we can simply use the regular demat/trading account without having to go through the hassle of opening PIS. Can someon confirm
    it.
    I have an NRO account with icici where the funds have been parked. They are just sitting idle. I was wondering if I can open a regular demat/trading account as any indian resident would, with any company (indiabulls, icicidirect, hdfc,fyers etc). Would it be allowed in the view of SEBI/RBI?

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hello Aneesh, just saw your message. Ideally you can open a normal trading & demat account by linking NRO bank but only hassle with that is TDS. Whenever you trade, we’ll have to calculate the TDS and do final settlements. As of now, we are not allowing mapping of NRO (Non-repatriable) account with us. This is because of the above-mentioned hassles. We don’t indulge in it because it can become operationally difficult for us. Hence, we open NRI account, if you can map either NRE/NRO PIS Account.

      Hope this clarifies.

  • Avatar Dena says:

    I would like to sell shares bought in US of Indian firm several years ago when they came to US. I do not have a Demat account yet.I do have NRO & NRE account With HDFC.
    Can Fyers help me with this.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hello Dena, can you rephrase it? Didn’t quite understand what you had to say. Do you mean you had bought shares in Indian companies when you were in the US several years ago? Do write to us here: https://fyers.in/join-us/

  • Avatar Ranjit Saho says:

    Hey Tejas, what’s this crazy new announcement you guys are coming up with on Dec 1st? Any hints?

  • Avatar Narang says:

    Your Fyers trading platform on web is truly amazing.. Hats off to you Tejas & Team. I was reading about you guys on YourStory and I just feel like telling you that you are doing an amazing Job. Keep inspiring and moving ahead!

  • Avatar Shajeeb says:

    Sir I just became NRi status a few weeks ago. I don’t want complications but can I open account in my mother’s name and trade? I just want to know if this is legal or what.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Shajeeb, your mother can open an account and trade with us. We cannot determine the source of funds and it is not our prerogative as long as it is compliant. Please beware of unauthorized trading, we don’t recommend it.

  • Avatar Ankit Sheth says:

    Recently I had applied for an IPO from my YES NRE PIS account. After selling the shares the bank is not accepting my funds from my brokers account. Bank informed me that any procedings from sale of shares aquired in primary market should ne deposited by cheque along with the CA certificate for the payment of capital gain tax.
    My concern is that I am not currently in India and how do I calculate and pay the capital gain tax on the said transaction and then aquire a CA certificate for the same. Is this the brokers responsiblity or mine. If I open the account with Fyers do you assist with this sort of problems?

  • Avatar Arun Kumar Sharma says:

    Hello Mr. Tejas, I have tried for weeks to get someone from fyers connect with me via your Facebook page but was unsuccessful and little disappointment on the service or knowledge for NRI clients, so asking you question here and appreciate your reply. Currently my status have been changed to NRI but I still have a resident account with Zerodha (DEMAT IL&FS) but would need to close it and open NRI account. I have NRE PIS and normal NRO saving account with yes bank, Now to trade using PINS account is a pain and I am very excited to learn that after RBI guidelines you will be able to allow NRI invest in equity using NON PINS NRO account. Can you please allow that starting now? If so can you please help me connect with someone from your team with NRI account opening knowledge to work with me? Thank you for the help.

    Arun Sharma

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi Mr. Arun, I have personally replied to your mail today and put you through to our NRI desk to help you out. Just saw your comment here. Apologies for delay.

  • You are a very persuasive writer. I can see this in your article. You have a way of writing compelling information that sparks much interest.

  • Avatar Gopal says:

    I am in Dubai but I have demat account with SHCIL and i
    Wanted to invest in stocks so please advise me how to proceed

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hello Gopal, if your residential status is India then you can link the existing demat account when you open a trading account with us. However, if you’re status is NRI, then you’d have to open a new Demat account. Please get in touch with us here: https://fyers.in/join-us/

  • Avatar Chandra Kant Mundra says:

    Hi Tejas,

    I am an NRI. I want to exercise below options.

    1) Open PIS with Yes bank and trade with both Yes bank and Fyers thru PIS.
    or
    I want to open both PIS and trading account with you only.

    And

    2) I want to trade without PIS (thru NRE if not possible then NRO)

    Can I keep investing as a resident though I am NRI.

    Please guide.

    Thanks & Regards.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi,
      1. Yes, you can open PIS account with Yes Bank. Open trading and demat account with Fyers and start trading.
      2. Yes, you can map the non-repatriate NRO bank account to trading account. so you can invest as resident.

      Please leave your details here to get started.

  • Avatar Nithin says:

    Do I have to submit FATCA form if I am from philippines?

  • Avatar Vamsi says:

    You guys are 50% cheaper than Zerodha for NRI trading.. Good to know! Why is it that you are tied up with Yes Bank instead of HDFC bank? I am currently with Zerodha but want to shift to fyers.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hello Vamsi, We’re tied up with both banks for NRI segment. To get the process started, please leave your details here: https://fyers.in/join-us/. Oh and by the way, yes we’re priced lesser but we don’t take pride in that.. We want to be known as the best trading platform in India.

    • Avatar prakash says:

      Hi Tejas ,

      I’am an NRI and currently trading with my NRE account through PIS… iam loosing hefty charges through TDS and bank charges .. This restricts me to actively trade . Request your suggestion . I

  • Avatar Musthafa says:

    Hi Teja,

    I am an NRI, but holding some stocks through normal savings account. Is that okay if I change my normal savings to NRO?

    can I trade through you if I have a NRO account with Axis Bank without groing through the PIS route

    Regards

  • Avatar ARUN SHARMA says:

    do you allow derivative trading for NRI? if so who is your clearing members?

    Arun

  • Avatar Rolling with markets says:

    Very cheap charges.. ICICI charges me .75% for delivery. How long does it take to open an account?

  • Avatar NITIN says:

    Hie Tejas,

    I am having NRE PIs account plus Demat/Trading account with Yes bank which I am using to buy stocks on repatriable basis. Also, I have NRO saving account with Yes Bank which I want to link with some discount broker like Fyers which will be Non-reptriable basis.
    I have following queries-
    1.Can I keep my NRE PIS plus Demat/trading account with Yes bank and at the same same time open another Demat/Trading account with Fyers to link my NRO savings account with it?
    2.What will be the brokerage charges with Fyers incase I open Demat/Trading account linked with my NRO savings account? I believe purchase of stocks thru NRO savings account are non-reptraiable basis and hence does not include additional paperwork like PIS accounts.
    3.Does IPO facility available with Fyres?
    Please advise.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Yes you can hold your NRE and PIS account with YESBANK and transact with FYERS. You can open trading and demat account with FYERS and provide your NRO bank account details. As per RBI and SEBI guidelines NRI’s can invest and trade in Indian markets trough NRO-NON PIS.

      So you can use your NRO account for opening account with FYERS. In this case as a broker we should do taxation for your trading account, means Broker should collect capital gain tax from clients and pay to income tax department and produce TDS certificate to client.

      Currently, we are working to develop a mechanism to do taxation for our NRI clients. Until we are live with that taxation process, we recommend you to come trough PIS route and open trading and demat account with FYERS.

      Our NRI brokerage is Rs. 100 per order across all the segments. Currently, IPO services are not available at FYERS, but every soon we will come up with this product as well

  • Avatar Sriram says:

    I have an account with HDFC bank and want to use the same NRO account to trade with you. please tell me the procedure.

  • Avatar Rukshar says:

    I want to shift from Zerodha to you.. because of your low charges and their platform issues. Can i continue with my existing HDFC bank a/c or do I need to open seperate account?

  • Avatar Raj says:

    Tejas,
    thanks for such an useful article. I have a few queries:
    1) Does Fyers do proprietary trading for your own profit? There is a view that such practice increases the risk of holding. Do you have any view?
    2) Do you have a plan to offer Valid till cancel or Good till cancel facility for equity trades?
    3) Do you offer NRI non PIS trading? i.e trading through NRO demat account and NRO savings account on non-repatriable basis.
    Thanks
    Raj

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Raj,
      1. No, FYERS does not indulge in proprietary trading unlike other stockbrokers. Most serious traders feel that the knowledge of their positions by the broker is being compromised in one way or the other. World over, many stockbrokers practice this and as a result have been accused of taking counter positions against their own clients. We don’t do this and in fact, we haven’t applied for the proprietary trading license either.

      2. Yes we have planned this for the future but not at the moment. VTC is a useful feature and it is on our minds.

      3. Yes, you can open an NRO savings account with our partner bank (Yes Bank) and trade through Non-PIS route. Get in touch with our sales for more info.

  • Avatar Raj says:

    Hi Tejas,
    Useful article thanks.
    Can you clarify if you support NRO trading through Non PINS route?
    I can open a NRO account with Yes bank if you require me to.
    Can you support good till cancel order for equity delivery?
    Both these could be an advantage for Fyers.

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Hi Raj, yes you can open an NRO account & trade through Non PIS route too. GTC orders are currently not available as the exchanges don’t allow it. But we have something planned for the future. You can leave your details here for more information: https://fyers.in/join-us/

  • Avatar Suresh Patel says:

    Hi!! Tejas, this article is just amazing it cleared so many of my doubts and thanks for stating the difference between NRE and NRO accounts and the procedure to open an account.

  • Avatar Amish says:

    Tejas I am from Manila, Philippines. Can your support exec skype with me @amishalpha92. Would like to invest in India through you

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Yes, do-able. I have forwarded your ID and will get a call right away as you are in a near time zone.

  • Avatar Pooja says:

    How many days it’ll take to open NRI account?

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Our processes are standard like it is for any other account. It really depends on the bank which we have signed up with. If all your documents are fine then it shouldn’t take more than 10 days or so. Considering signatures are mandatory on some documents logistics is what takes up most amount of time.

  • Avatar Manohar says:

    Is there any changes in the brokerage charged or same as normal account?

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Manohar, we charge ₹100 per order for all types of transactions for NRIs. In fact, this is the lowest charge in the Indian stockbroking Industry.

  • Avatar Mukesh says:

    How many times margin will i get for NRI account?

  • Avatar John says:

    I am in Dubai, can I register to become associate from Kerala or can I do from dubai?

  • Avatar Divya says:

    I have Demat a/c with HDFC, can i use that to open new one?

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Well its always better to open a demat account with IL&FS through us and then link your NRI bank account to it. It’ll save you complication.

  • Avatar Raj says:

    I am starting as full time future trader,
    I wanted to ask
    Do you consider that stock trading can be banned for general public in future time??
    Just a curious question of job security ☺

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Raj, this is quite an imaginative question. Stock trading is as old as the hills. It is not likely to be banned and in fact, will be more encouraged because of the following factors:
      1. It is a source of revenue for the governments (State & Center) in the form of taxes (STT, CTT, Stamp Duty, Service Taxes, Cess, STCG etc.)
      2. It incentivizes companies to list their companies on the bourses thereby resulting in market valuations of companies. Without going public, the valuation of companies is not open for the investing public and is likely to remain lower. Lower company valuations reduces the capacity to raise higher capital in the form of FPOs, IPOs, equity divestments and loan pledges.
      3. Equity is a major asset class and a population is not likely to be deprived of investing in it because these qualify as the most high quality investments in comparison to other asset classes.
      4. Short-term traders provide liqudity which is imperative for the market to survive.

      For all the above reasons, it is highly unlikely. Banning will result in a backward development which will not be taken well in general.

    • Avatar Aritra Burman says:

      Hi,
      I am a UK citizen and OCI cardholder. I have been staying in India since 2013.

      I don’t have any NRE or NRO account. I have a resident savings account and I am getting salary in Indian Rupees from an Indian company.

      Now, I have decided to invest in stock market.
      I read in few websites that recently “FEMA” has changed the definition of NRI so it also includes “OCI card holders”. Does that mean, I should open an “NRO account” and “PIS account” to invest in stocks?

      OR shall I open a demat account by declaring myself as “Indian citizen”?

      As your charges are low, I would like to open an account with you.

      Regards,
      Aritra Burman

      • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

        Hello Aritra, I suggest you leave your details here and our team will get in touch with you, understand all the details and help you accordingly. Here’s the link: https://fyers.in/join-us/. I wouldn’t like to comment on this unless my team confirms the latest changes. Looking forward.

  • Avatar Bajaj says:

    Does Fyers help me to open the PIS Account?

  • Avatar Anitha says:

    Well written post….Thanksss

  • Avatar Ranjith T says:

    Being an NRI, will I be charged to open an account with Fyers??

    • Tejas Khoday Tejas Khoday says:

      Yeah, we do charge a fee of 1000 for NRIs. It almost feels like the process of dealing with NRIs is made too difficult to deal with.

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