A Chance to Own Gold In the Form Indians Own Gold.
What’s a Tola?
The tola is a unit of measurement used in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Singapore. A tola is equal to 180 grains, 11.6666 grams, or 3/8 of an ounce, 0.375 troy ounces. Pamp Suisse, a world leading bullion brand, has released a new ‘Lady Fortuna’ one tola sized .9999 fine gold ingot just in time for the Indian gold buying season.
India’s love affair with gold
India has a long tradition of gold buying and gold giving. Gold is used as a standard and preservation of wealth in India. Gold has been a part of Indian culture for more than 5,000 years and remains so today. As a result of centuries of gold buying in India, it is estimated that Indian households own about 18,000 tons of gold! That is more than three times the amount of gold that the United States has stored at Fort Knox in Kentucky.
Most of the gold possessed by Indians belongs to rural and farming households. It is estimated that Indians spend 8% of their daily consumption on gold!
So far in 2016, Indian gold demand has slumped as a result of higher prices, import duties and sales taxes placed on gold. As a result of lower gold demand in the first seven months of the year, there is pent up demand. Indeed, Indian gold demand was up 20% in August from the prior three months after falling sharply earlier this year.
With the festival and marriage season approaching, gold observers expect demand to surge.
Here is why:
The Monsoon Season and it Impact on Gold Demand
Much of Indian gold is purchased by farmers whose fortunes depend on a good rainy season for their crops to thrive. In times of low rainfall or drought, farmers struggle to get by and have little or no disposable income. When the rains are plentiful, the farmers’ incomes increase as do their disposable incomes. With higher disposable income, Indians inevitably buy gold to preserve their wealth. After two years of drought, the 2016 Indian monsoon season has provided welcome relief with abundant and surplus rainfall being reported across rural India.
As a result of a far better than average monsoon this year, gold demand is expected to pick up during the traditional gold buying fall season that includes gold buying holidays and is when many Indian weddings are scheduled.
Indian Gold Buying Festivals and Weddings
While Indians buy gold to preserve their wealth, they also give gold as a traditional much appreciated gift. There is an expression in India: “No gold, No wedding”. Many Indian fathers save gold each year in order to give it to their daughters on their wedding days. Guests arrive at Indian weddings laden with gold to give as gifts. It has been estimated that over 20 million Indian weddings take place each year.
Upcoming Indian gold giving festivals include Sharad Navratri that takes place this year from October 1, 2016 to October 10, 2016 and marks the beginning of autumn. Diwali, or the festival of lights takes place on October 30 and signifies the triumph of light over darkness.
During these Hindu holidays, Indians buy gold for themselves as they believe it is auspicious to buy gold that will not only help store their wealth, but act to aid their overall financial growth. Giving gold as gifts provides the same salubrious effect.
This article by BGASC is not, and should not be regarded as, investment advice or as a recommendation regarding any particular course of action.