As was announced earlier, Retail brokerage Geojit BNP Paribas took the first spot in launching a stock trading app on Facebook called ‘Flip Social’. The app will allow clients to execute stock trades on the Bombay Stock Exchange within Facebook itself. Launched a week ago, the first trade order was placed by Ashish Kumar Chauhan, MD and CEO at BSE, within the Facebook app. (News Source: Medianama)
The app includes investment tutorials, a stock market game that will give players a virtual real time experience of trading in the Indian stock markets and a trading application, as reported.
Flip Social Facebook app
When you visit the app, you are welcomed by two options: login to play with weekly prizes to be won and login to trade. At the top is a live stock market ticker with the latest stock prices from BSE and other global stock exchanges. Interestingly, you can pause the ticker or increase/decrease the speed of it.
The virtual game is accessible to all, you don’t have to be a client of the company to play the game. I signed up with my name, email id and phone number, and decided to give it a shot with the virtual money of Rs. 1 lakh that I received on signing up. With this cash, I could create an interesting portfolio with stocks bought from Dabur, Pidilite, Wipro and Videocon. One can only trade in BSE stocks during market hours and on days when the markets are working. Three winners will be announced every week at the end of the last trading day of that week.
The game menu displays winners, rules and T&C along with the option to open an account with Geojit. The YouTube link takes you to the company’s YouTube channel which does not host any videos to help in trading.
The ‘Login to trade’ option is the one for real trading and needs you to be a registered user. At the top left are icons to invite or send messages to your Facebook friends. There is also a ‘My Recommendations’ icon, which throws up an error at my end.
Targeting young investors
Facebook is undoubtedly the largest social network in India with 78 million monthly active users for Q1 2013. As per SocialBakers Facebook statistics report, the largest age group is currently 18-24, followed by the users in the age of 25-34. Developing a stock trading app on Facebook is a cool move by Geojit, one that will make it attractive and convenient to the young, social-savvy investors. However, it needs to educate on trading and its benefits as this is often the biggest hurdle for first time traders. I couldn’t find the investment tutorials within the app, as was reported.
Earlier this year, ICICI securities made financial planning a fun thing to learn through social media storytelling for its portal, ICICI Direct with two animated characters – Gyano, the magician and Mobo, the money boss. While one could hangout with the animated characters on YouTube, the brand integrated Facebook for further action like providing customised investment solutions or videos explaining financial jargon.
With the increasing use of social media in trading and the risks involved in disseminating information on the public platforms, market regulator SEBI has been cautious. The regulator plans to issue social media guidelines to companies on the use of Facebook and Twitter for sharing non-public information. As to how far would these guidelines apply to the newly launched Facebook apps is something to be seen.