New Delhi: Gold worth about Rs9,000 crore was sold during the Diwali week, 39% more than a year earlier, as festive demand and the safe haven status of the precious metal beat high prices, said the World Gold Council (WGC).
“The Diwali week this year (12-19 October) witnessed Rs8,904 crore gold sales resulting in growth of 39.2% over the same period last year,” said a study by the Council based on inputs of participating retailers across India.
Gold prices in the national capital touched a peak of Rs16,250 per 10 grams before Diwali, on 14 October, from Rs15,370 in the beginning of September. The prices are ruling at Rs16,175 per 10 grams on Friday.
Western India accounted for the maximum purchase worth Rs3,116.40 crore, followed by the North (Rs2,671.20 crore), South (Rs1,780.80 crore) and East (Rs1,335.60 crore).
The study covered festivals like Diwali, Dhanteras, Pushya Nakshatra, Bestu Varas and Bhai Dooj, celebrated during the week in different parts of India when gold purchase is a traditional activity.
“This increase in demand can be attributed to consumers’ belief of gold being the only safe investment in the current global market scenario (which is still reeling under the financial crisis),” WGC managing director (Indian sub-continent) Ajay Mitra said.
In quantity terms, however, the rise in sales is not as dramatic. As much as 56 tonnes of gold was sold during Diwali, about 6% more than a year earlier, said the report.