Milan Dhanale, 33, a Thane-based lawyer, is on to his fifth broker now. “When I started investing eight years ago, brokerage rates were very high. So, each time a broker offered me a better rate, I shifted,” he says. Dhanale now has a trading account with Delhi-based SAS Online, which charges him Rs 9 per trade, irrespective of lot size. It is investors like Dhanale, keen to pare their trading costs, who are driving the shift from traditional full-service brokers towards discount brokers. Owing to this shift, discount brokers like Bengaluru-based Zerodha have seen their client base double over the past year to 119,000 (as per December data from National Stock Exchange).
Cost and tech advantage