Jewellers bet on ‘Dhanteras’; expect to clock 70% of last year’s biz

Jewellers are betting on recovery and are optimistic that a rebound in the economy and pent up demand will help boost sales during this ‘Dhanteras’ and the industry is likely to do up to 70 per cent of last year’s business.

Notwithstanding the ruling high gold prices and ongoing Covid-19 uncertainties, jewellers are expecting a revival in retail sales this festive season as the yellow metal has always been an integral part to festivals in India, particularly so during Dhanteras, Diwali, and the ensuing wedding season.

“There has been a gradual growth in both footfalls and sales since the beginning of the festive season which has grown even more since the last few days despite the ongoing uncertainties over COVID. This has made us hopeful that we will be able to do 70 per cent of last year’s business during Dhanteras,” All India Gems and Jewellery Domestic Council (GJF) Chairman Anantha Padmanabhan told PTI.

Gold prices have been ruling in the range of Rs 52,000 per 10 grams in the country.

“Millions of Indians believe that purchasing gold during the auspicious occasion of Dhanteras will usher in good fortune and wealth. Reflecting this sentiment, this year, Dhanteras is likely to mark the onset of a modest buying period, providing some respite after a prolonged phase of suppressed demand and subdued activity due to the current pandemic,” World Gold Council Managing Director, India, Somasundaram PR said.

Digital gold providers like SafeGold, Augmont and MMTC-PAMP and other online platforms could find this period very conducive for increasing volumes and for broadening the consumer base, he said adding that “the higher savings following drop in consumption expenditure of many households as a result of lockdown could flow to gold.” According to CapitalVia Global Research product manager, commodities, Kshitij Purohit, the US dollar remains a crucial driver for the precious metal going forward.

In anticipation of festive demand, gold has taken a new stage in Indian markets and in August it showed a month-on-month gain of 107 per cent, he said adding that focusing on the current data, it is unlikely to cool off the prices of gold, despite being the continuing pandemic.

“Technically, MCX Gold December has jumped above Rs 52,000 per 10 grams, where it holds a strong support at Rs 51,200. All uncertainty due to COVID-19 and festive demand from the India gold price will remain firm. We are also expecting follow up buying due to marriage season also,” he added.

PNG Jewellers Chairman and Managing Director Saurabh Gadgil stated that this festive season the footfalls are fairly regular and the market seems to be in a revival mode.

“We are seeing a clear trend of agri-business backed families spending more. Rural India is showing more consumption appetite than the metros.

“Gold is still the most favoured purchase for the festive season. A lot of people including Millennial and first-time investors are favouring gold as an investment option. We are also seeing strong bookings in light-weight and wearable jewellery to be picked up for Dhanteras and Diwali besides bullion products,” he said.

He further added that “we are expecting to do business of around 85 per cent of last Diwali in quantity terms and most certainly we will exceed last year’s business in value terms since gold prices have risen in these last 12 months.” “Consumers are looking to bring in auspiciousness to their lives whilst shopping with care and, therefore, have valued the safety standards that we have established in our stores. Our new collection offers good value and freshness in the wearable, affordable, lightweight category as well as in the bridal jewellery category that we owe to our karigars whose skills have come to the fore beautifully this festive season,” Titan Company Tanishq VP- Category, Marketing and Retail, Arun Narayan said.

Senco Gold and Diamonds CEO Suvankar Sen said, “this Dhanteras, we are expecting similar sales levels in value terms as last year. In volume terms there might be a 15-20 per cent decrease compared to last year.

The pandemic and the subsequent rise in gold prices has reinforced customers’ trust in gold as an asset class, he opined.

“We should get back to pre-COVID levels once there is stability in the market and more certainty in people’s minds. Bridal jewellery is doing well since it’s an Indian tradition of buying jewellery for weddings. Also designs that look heavy but weigh lighter, and daily wear jewellery in diamonds and platinum are doing well,” he added.

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