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Share trading statistics

Coronavirus has sent shockwaves through the economy.

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Quick overview

  • The BSE Sensex was down to just under 26,000 points on March 23, a drop of roughly 40% from where it was in the month prior
  • Major share trading and brokerage platforms have seen an average website traffic uptick of 43% from February to March of this year
  • Search data suggests more people are currently looking up how to buy rather than sell stocks
Coronavirus-induced economic conditions have led to big movements in the global equities market and India has not been immune. The BSE flagship Sensex was down to just under 26,000 points on March 23, roughly a 40% drop from where it was in February of this year.

Finder analysis of SEMrush and Google Trends data suggests Indians have been paying attention to the recent price declines. Analysis of website traffic from SEMrush reveals many share trading platforms and brokerages are seeing spikes in website traffic. Of the 7 brands included in the analysis, 2 saw their traffic increase of 50% or more, and 5 saw their traffic increase between 25.64% and 44.38%. Overall, there was a 43.24% uptick in Indians visiting these share trading and brokerage platforms on average.

Upstox experienced the biggest traffic increase from February to March with a month-on-month traffic increase of 62.96%. IndiaInfoline also saw a big spike with a 50% increase followed by OANDA (44.38%), IG (43.74%) and Zerodha (42.63%). Sharekhan and ICICI Bank saw smaller positive increases, at 33.33% and 25.64%, respectively.

PlatformPercentage MoM increase from Feb20 – Mar20
IG43.74%
OANDA44.38%
Zerodha42.63%
IndiaInfoline50%
ICICI Bank25.64%
Sharekhan33.33%
Upstox62.96%

Are Indian adults buying or selling stocks?

SEMrush data suggests more people were interested in share trading in March than in February but it doesn’t tell us if they’re more interested in selling or buying – for that we’ll need to take a look at Google Trends data.

Online search interest for both buying and selling shares has spiked in April so far. While some investors might be looking to sell their shares before prices drop further, search interest is much higher for buying shares.

WeekBuy stocksSell stocks
1/4/1940
1/5/1933
1/6/1970
1/7/1933
1/8/1960
1/9/1930
1/10/1970
1/11/1953
1/12/1922
1/1/2055
1/2/2030
1/3/20145
1/4/20199

How does India compare to the rest of the world?

The Google Trends data for India is consistent with global trends with search interest in buying shares skyrocketing in March and remaining high in April.

WeekBuy shares: (Worldwide)Sell shares: (Worldwide)
28/04/2019248
05/05/2019236
12/05/2019225
19/05/2019227
26/05/2019236
02/06/2019196
09/06/2019196
16/06/2019207
23/06/2019186
30/06/2019186
07/07/2019165
14/07/2019226
21/07/2019186
28/07/2019227
04/08/2019196
11/08/2019187
18/08/2019187
25/08/2019215
01/09/2019196
08/09/2019206
15/09/2019236
22/09/2019207
29/09/2019229
06/10/2019216
13/10/2019226
20/10/2019176
27/10/2019217
03/11/2019238
10/11/2019218
17/11/2019257
24/11/2019226
01/12/2019208
08/12/2019226
15/12/2019236
22/12/2019185
29/12/2019226
05/01/2020236
12/01/2020236
19/01/2020228
26/01/2020246
02/02/2020309
09/02/2020248
16/02/20202610
23/02/2020348
01/03/20203910
08/03/20209011
15/03/202010013
22/03/20207511
29/03/2020639
05/04/2020579
12/04/20205812
19/04/20207510

Out of the 33 countries where there was enough data for a comparison of the term “buy shares”, India ranked in the middle at 8th for a period of 30 days across April and March. Overall, there has been more search interest for share buying in India than in countries like the Philippines, Switzerland, Thailand, Indonesia and Germany but less than countries like Ireland, the UK and South Africa. Interestingly, India’s rankings remain within this range over the past 5 years, with India ranking 9th for search interest in the last 12 months and 7th over the last 5 years, suggesting share trading interest has grown in line with worldwide interest.

Overall Australia, New Zealand and South Africa have seen the most interest in the term “buy shares” over the last 30 days and last 12 months. Comparing the rankings from 5 years ago to the last 30 days reveals New Zealand has had the biggest search interest ranking increase (3), followed by Vietnam (2), the United States (2) and Canada (2). Perhaps it’s retail investors in these countries that are most optimistic about investing opportunities as a result of coronavirus market movements.

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