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Best Index Funds in India

10 March 2022
7 minutes

Index funds are funds that invest in an index.  Their main objective is to replicate a stock market index in terms of the portfolio. An index fund has the same stocks and in the same weightage as the stocks listed on the chosen index. 

Here are few of the best index funds in India with the highest AUMs. This is for information purposes only. This is not a recommendation that highest AUMs should be considered before investing. Please consider your risk levels and goals before investing.

This is list is not a recommendation. This is for informational purposes only. The list was last updated on February 28, 2022. Funds have been arranged in order of highest AUMs. This parameter has just been used to sort the funds. This is not a suggestion that you look at the size of the funds before investing. Kindly do your own research. 

List of Top Index Funds in India According to the Highest AUMs

UTI Nifty Index Fund- Growth

UTI Nifty Index Fund is a mutual fund that is being managed by UTI Mutual Fund and is designed to imitate the Nifty 50 index. The fund was launched in March 2020. The fund manager of the fund is Sharwan Kumar Goyal who also manages other ETFs and Index Funds of UTI MF.

Get more information about the fund- UTI Nifty Index Fund- Growth

 

HDFC Index Fund- Nifty 50 Plan

HDFC Index Fund is a mutual fund being managed by HDFC Mutual Fund and will follow the Nifty 50 index.  The fund is being managed by Krishan Kumar Daga and Arun Agarwal.  The fund was launched in July 2002. Both fund managers manage most other index funds, ETFs and arbitrage fund.

Get more information about the fund-  HDFC Index Fund- Nifty 50 Plan

 

Edelweiss NIFTY PSU Bond Plus SDL Index Fund 2026- Growth

Edelweiss NIFTY PSU Bond Plus SDL Index Fund 2026 is an open-ended target maturity Index Fund predominantly investing in the constituents of Nifty PSU Bond Plus SDL Apr 2026 50:50 Index. The fund was launched in March 2021. The fund manager for the fund are Mr. Dhawal Dalal and Mr. Gautam Kaul. Both  manage many other Edelweiss funds and Bharat Bond ETFs and FOFs

Get more information about the fund- Edelweiss NIFTY PSU Bond Plus SDL Index Fund 2026- Growth

 

HDFC Index Fund- Sensex Plan

HDFC Index Fund- Sensex Plan is an open-ended scheme replicating/tracking S&P BSE SENSEX Index. The fund managers are Mr. Krishan Kumar Daga and Mr. Arun Agarwal who have managed many other HDFC ETFs and index funds. It was launched in July 2002.

Get more information about the fund- HDFC Index Fund- Sensex Plan

 

Aditya Birla Sun Life Nifty SDL Plus PSU Bond SEP 2026 60:40 Index Fund- Growth

Aditya Birla Sun Life Nifty SDL Plus PSU Bond SEP 2026 60:40 Index Fund is a scheme with the objective of tracking the Nifty SDL Plus PSU Bond Sep 2026 60:40 Index by investing in PSU Bonds and SDLs, maturing on or before September 2026, subject to tracking errors. It was launched in September 2021. Its fund manager is Mr. Mohit Sharma who has managed many Aditya Birla Funds

Get more information about the fund- Aditya Birla Sun Life Nifty SDL Plus PSU Bond SEP 2026 60:40 Index Fund- Growth

 

Motilal Oswal S&P 500 Index  Fund- Growth

Motilal Oswal S&P 500 Index  Fund is an open ended scheme replicating / trackingS&P 500 Index. This is a fund that invests mainly in shares of foreign companies. Its fund managers are Mr Ankush Sood and Mr Abhiroop Mukherjee. Mr. Ankush Sood has prior experience prominently in Institutional Sales Trading Function. Mr Abhiroop has over 13 years of experience in the fixed income Securities trading and fund management.

Get more information about the fund- Motilal Oswal S&P 500 Index  Fund- Growth

 

ICICI Prudential Nifty Index Fund- Growth

This fund is being managed by ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund and will mimic the Nifty 50 index. The fund manager for the scheme is Kayzad Eghlim who manages few other Sensex and Nifty index funds for the AMC. The fund is available since February 2002.

Get more information about the fund- ICICI Prudential Nifty Index Fund- Growth

 

IDFC Gilt 2027 Index Fund- Growth

IDFC Gilt 2027 Index Fund Is A target maturity index fund that invests in constituents of CRISIL Gilt 2027 Index and matures on 30th June 2027. This fund is managed by Harshal Joshi & Mr. Anurag Mittal. It was launched in March 2021. Mr. Mittal has experience spanning of over 14 years in Mutual Fund & Banking. Mr. Joshi has experience spanning over 13 years in Mutual Fund.  

Get more information about the fund- IDFC Gilt 2027 Index Fund- Growth

 

SBI Nifty Index Fund- Growth

SBI Nifty Index Fund is being managed by SBI Mutual Fund and follows the performance of the Nifty 50 index. The fund manager for the scheme is Raviprakash Sharma. Mr Shamra manages other index ETFs, gold ETFs, gold funds among other funds he manages for the AMC. This scheme was launched in January 2002.

Get more information about the fund- SBI Nifty Index Fund- Growth

 

ICICI Prudential Nifty Next 50 Index Fund- Growth

This fund is being managed by ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund and is designed to replicate the performance of the Nifty Next 50 Index. This index consists of 50 companies from the Nifty 100 Index after excluding the Nifty 50 companies. The fund manager for this fund is Kayzad Eghlim. The fund was launched in June 2010.

Get more information about the fund- ICICI Prudential Nifty Next 50 Index Fund- Growth

 

Nature of Index Funds:

Index funds are designed to imitate the performance of a chosen stock index. When I say imitating, I mean the holdings of the index and also the weightage of each stock. Even the best index funds have to follow this norm. So for example, a Nifty index Fund will invest 10% of its money in Reliance Industries if Nifty has given 10% of its weightage to RIL. Stock market indices also rejig their portfolio in a timely fashion throughout the year. Index funds have to abide by such changes. A fund manager of an index fund is supposed t keep track of any changes in the weightage or list of stocks.

Index Funds vs ETFs:

Some may get confused between index funds and ETFs. Many index funds and ETFs map various stock market indices. The key difference between the two is that ETFs are listed on the stock exchanges and traded on a daily basis during market hours. Index funds operate like regular mutual funds where often the day end’s NAV is charged.

Read more: Index Funds Vs ETFs : Top Differences You Must Know

Things To Look at Before Investing in Index Funds

Passive Management: Index funds are passive mutual funds. Passive mutual funds are those funds which do not have any active involvement of the fund manager. Like mentioned above, fund managers of index funds imitate the performance of an index. He/she cannot have a say in which stocks go in and out of the fund, how much of the fund’s money will be invested in which stock. 

Returns: In index funds, fund managers do not look to beat the alpha, which in stock market lingo means to beat the benchmark. Here the fund manager tries to imitate it. So in most cases, the return is almost as much as the index returns or a little lower because of the charges of the fund. Hence, most of the top index funds in India will have returns almost similar to the benchmark index there are following.

Cost: Their expense ratio is generally lower than active funds.

Comparing Two Index Funds

Index funds can be benchmarked to different indices and not just the benchmark index: Sensex and Nifty 50. In fact, in the aforementioned list, you can see that there are index funds that are benchmarked to U.S. indices or broader ones like Nifty 100. When comparing two index funds, we can keep the following in mind:

  1. Index: Check the benchmark index and if it suits your investment needs.
  2. Cost: Expense ratio and other costs attached to the fund by the AMC becomes crucial in this case so one should also have a close look at those factors.
  3. Historical Data: Checking historical performance and if the index fund has been successful in aligning its portfolio to the benchmark index and if there were any repeated and reported discrepancies.

Conclusion

Index funds are passive mutual funds and aim to achieve wealth creation for investors by replicating an index’s performance. Index funds may be less risky as compared to active funds due to this reason. Such funds help balance out your portfolio across the risk parameter. Even though index funds map a particular index,  one should not blindly invest in one of the best index funds. Do your due diligence in research and find out if these funds suit your portfolio and how much you should invest in them. 

Happy Investing!

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Disclaimer

The stocks mentioned in this article are not recommendations. Please conduct your own research and due diligence before investing. Investment in securities market are subject to market risks, read all the related documents carefully before investing. Please read the Risk Disclosure documents carefully before investing in Equity Shares, Derivatives, Mutual fund, and/or other instruments traded on the Stock Exchanges. As investments are subject to market risks and price fluctuation risk, there is no assurance or guarantee that the investment objectives shall be achieved. NBT do not guarantee any assured returns on any investments. Past performance of securities/instruments is not indicative of their future performance.
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