This post was most recently updated on December 22nd, 2022
A Provident fund or PF is a safe and secure investment option that most Indians trust, Specially the middle-class employees. It provides excellent interest rates at the same time it is very easy and convenient to invest. In this article, let’s understand the difference between EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF.
Since there is much more to provident fund in terms of EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF – Let’s have a look at what are key the differences between these investment options and which one is best for you to invest in.
EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF – What are the key differences?
The main key differences between EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF are as below:
|Kind of PF||Employee provident fund||Voluntary provident fund An extension of EPF.||General provident fund||Public provident fund|
|Account managed by||EPFO(Employees’ provident fund organization )||EPFO(Employees’ provident fund organization )||Department of Pension and Pensioner’s Welfare||Banks/Post office on behalf of Central Government|
|Eligibility||Any organization employing a minimum of 20 workers is liable to give EPF benefits to the workers.||salaried individuals who receive their monthly payments through a specific salary account and contribute to EPF.||Only Govt employees who are residents of India and only if they have joined before 1st Jan 1004 can invest in GPF||Any Indian age 18 or more can invest in PPF|
|Contribution Limits||Restricts to 12 % of basic salary||Allows more than 12 % maximum contribution is up to 100% of his Basic Salary||An employee contributes 6 % of the salary Government contributes 6% of the salary||Min of 500 and up to 1.5 lakh can be deposited in a financial year|
|Tax Benefit||Falls under EEE category (( EEE – exempt on contribution; exempt from the principal; exempt on interest) ) Exempted from tax calculation under Section 80C||The VPF falls under the EEE category||GPF is a EEE tax-free retirement-cum savings scheme.||The VPF falls under the EEE category|
|Loan facility||The employee should be in service for 5 years to be eligible to get a loan against PF||The employee should be in service for 5 years to be eligible to get a loan against PF||It can be availed at any time during the employment||Between the third and fifth financial year from the date of opening the PPF account, PPF loans can be availed against the account.|
|Lock in period||Can be closed while quitting the job permanently. Can be transferred while changing companies till retirement. The maturity amount is tax-free only on completion of 5 years.||same lock-in period as the EPF on resignation or within 2 months of unemployment. Partial withdrawal is allowed, but the withdrawal amount is tax-free only if the account is at least 5 years old||Can be closed while quitting the job permanently. Can be transferred while changing companies till retirement.||-15 years of the lock-in period. -duration can be extended by a block of 5 years -premature withdrawal allowed with certain conditions.|
|The interest rate in 2022||8.1||8.1||7.1||7.1|
|Reliability||EPF account offers risk-free, guaranteed returns, and capital protection as it is backed by the Government of India. Therefore, opening a PPF account comes with minimal risks.||VPF account offers risk-free, guaranteed returns, and capital protection as it is backed by the Government of India. Therefore, opening a PPF account comes with minimal risks.||GPF account offers risk-free, guaranteed returns, and capital protection as it is backed by the Government of India. Therefore, opening a PPF account comes with minimal risks.||A Public provident fund / PPF account offers risk-free, guaranteed returns, and capital protection as it is backed by the Government of India. Therefore, opening a PPF account comes with minimal risks.|
From the above table, it is clear that if you are a working individual then EPF / VPF is the best option for you considering the higher interest rate that you will receive in comparison to PPF. Also, EPF / VPF has an easier withdrawal option and transfer mechanism.
If you are not a working individual then PPF is a great choice for you to secure a good interest rate with peace of mind of having Govt security over your investments.
If you are a Govt employee then you have a choice to invest in GPF which is more or less similar to PPF.
FAQs on EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF
Which is the best investment option EPF vs PPF vs VPF vs GPF?
If you are an employed individual then EPF / VPF is the best investment option for you as it offers a higher interest rate than PPF. PPF / GPF are also great investment options if you are not an employed individual.
Are EPF and VPF same?
EPF – Employees provident fund is the default PF option that every working individual contributes to which is fixed at 12% of the basic salary. VPF is a voluntary option, if you opt for it then you can contribute a maximum of up to 100% of the basic. When you opt for VPF the amount gets accumulated in the same account as EPF.
Between EPF and PPF, which one gives higher interest?
As per the current interest rates, EPF gives 8.5% interest which is higher than the PPF interest rate which is 7.1%.
Should you go for PPF or VPF?
If you are a working individual then you should opt for VPF as it gives a higher interest rate than PPF. Also, PPF has 15 years lock-in period whereas VPF works the same way as EPF.
Is VPF and GPF the same?
No VPF is a Voluntary provident fund extension of EPF which is available to all salaried employees whereas GPF is a General provident fund which is available to only government employees. The interest rate in VPF is higher than GPF.