The benefits under this account are undeniable.As mentioned above, it ranks very high on safety. The returns are guaranteed and are reset every fiscal year by the government. From April 1, 2012, the rate was 8.8% per annum but got lowered to 8.7% per annum from April 1, 2013. This year the interest rate was left unchanged.This is the only exempt-exempt-exempt, or EEE, scheme available in India. This indicates that it is exempt from tax all the way. When you deposit money in the account, you get a tax exemption under Section 80C up to Rs 1.50 lakh. The interest earned is also tax free. On maturity, the lump sum (interest earned + principal invested) is not taxable.But don't get blinded. If your savings are limited and channelising all into PPF results in a woefully under-diversified portfolio, then take a step back. No matter how highly you think of PPF, have an equity exposure by way of a diversified equity mutual fund. Equity is all the more crucial in a portfolio if you are young and in a wealth-building stage. With a long-term time frame, in a good fund, you will be able to ride the stock market upheavals and earn a substantial return. Also, long-term capital gains in equity is nil – so you would not pay any tax on your investment return.