After a dip in demand in 2018, it appears Indians are buying gold again.
Anecdotal data seemed to indicate strong demand for the yellow metal in India during the Akshaya Tritiya holiday. Retailers reported sales were up by as much as 25%. As it turns out, demand was indeed strong. Gold imports into India were up 36% year-over-year in May, according to sources cited by Bloomberg.
India imported 105.8 tons of gold in May. That compares with just 77.6 tons a year earlier. Combined shipments of gold into the country during April and May came in at 226.6 tons. That was up about 74% from the same period in 2018.
According to Yahoo Finance, “Higher gold imports by India – the world’s second-biggest consumer of the yellow metal – could support global prices further.”
Gold imports into India dipped by about a fifth in 2018, primarily due to a weak rupee and high domestic gold prices.
“Sales were amazing last month, with huge demand seen during Akshaya Tritiya. The drop in prices has really complemented that trend,” said G.V. Sreedhar, managing director of Sree Rama Jewels and a former chairman of the All India Gem & Jewellery Domestic Council. Purchases for weddings were also good when compared to last year and sales are expected to be robust this month as well, he said.
Analysts say dynamics are in place to support