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Home > Business > Business Headline > Commodities

Wanted: Gujarati acumen for commodity markets

Rakesh Kumar/Commodity Online | November 26, 2007 10:37 IST

Who rides the bull? Well, nobody really knows. But one thing is for sure, without Gujaratis there is no bull run. And you can trust Gujaratis to revive, revitalise, rejuvenate or make financial markets fall like nine pins.

But look at commodity markets. It really needs to be rejuvenated. Till now shackled by regulatory controls, inflationary dangers, political riddles and export-import confusion, who will revive the commodities sector?

The first thing comes to your mind is the enterprising Gujaratis. They may not be a social entrepreneur. They may not be charitable. They even may not be sympathetic. But they are cut-throat businessmen who know which situation they should be in and at what time. In the process of earning money for themselves, they end up making quite a few millionaires and the cascading effect lights up the economy.

If you see the BSE listing, companies promoted by Gujaratis -- including Parsis from Gujarat -- accounts for more than 33% of the total private market capital. The next comes Marwaris, who account for just one third of this. Should you need any more proof about Gujaratis' business acumen?

Gujaratis are scared of roadblocks. They will always look for bypasses. They are not patient enough to wait. They just turn the clock to their favour. They are not interested in being known as intellectuals. They are more interested in financing the intellectuals. They are not interested to enter universities, rather they would create one. They have the least of interest to wait for the market to open. They cut it open.

That is where commodity markets need Gujarati support. Commodity market needs a knife and a butcher who can cut it open. Make it free and interesting like the equities. There could be loopholes, but these loopholes were cleverly pointed out by people like Harshad Mehta and Ketan Parikh.

They may be culprits for some, but they are the people who taught you there is a system failure. They are actually system engineers. When it comes to their money, even party loyalty is not important.

At the BJP headquarters in Ahmedabad, a worker was heard saying that they need BJP in Gujarat for safety and security of their property and money while at the same time they need Congress at the Centre for the safety and security of the stock market.

If trends are to be seen, even when BJP won with thumping majority, the parliamentary elections saw Congress making a major headway.

How many teenagers make a living -- say make a killing -- by intra-day trading? Well, if you count, a majority of them will be Gujaratis. Very few people except Gujaratis even know the ABCD of trading, leave alone intra-day trading.

Harish Gandhi is an engineering student in Rajkot. He attends college regularly but when the entire Rajkot sleeps in the afternoon � when the sun is still bright and shining -- he logs onto his trading terminal and uses his intellectual expertise he gathered the previous night from his broadband connection at home to choose which stocks to invest in.

When he visits his broker next day, a cool Rs 5,000 to 10,000 is in his kitty. His father offered him a bike when he entered the engineering college but he refused. Instead, he took the money and invested for the first time in stock market.

Now he is worth 10 lakhs -- just in a matter of 8 months. He has bought a bike the next month, but after multiplying the amount his father, who is a stock market enthusiast and a banker, gave him.

For any market to 'glow' there should be fewer regulatory controls. In fact, the very norm of regulations should be symbolic. Instead, a system should be in place. In developing this system, a scam here or there, should be expected. Nothing is without its own risk factors and few other than Gujaratis know what risk is all about. If the policy makers are smart enough, then even these scams can be avoided.

So who should control commodity market if it needs exponential growth? Not a Gujarati at the helm of affairs but more of a Gujarati culture of doing business.

Move out of political compulsions and let simple laws of economics take its own course. Understand the relationship between demand and supply. Only the Gujarati way of doing business will tell you that this relationship underlines the forces behind the allocation of resources.

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