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High gold price forces shift in jewellery buying habit this festive season: Assocham

KOLKATA: Rising gold prices are fast forcing change in women's jewellery buying habits also aided by the changing fashion trends from the yellow metal to diamonds and other metals like platinum, reveals anASSOCHAM recent survey ahead of Dhanteras and Diwali festivals. 

For the ASSOCHAM Survey on "Diamonds and platinum shines as 
gold loses sheen in Urban cities" the research team interacted with about 350 jewellery makers based in Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Ahemdabad, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Chandigarh and Dehradun. The jewellers in major cities like Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Chennai, Ahemdabad, Kolkata, Dehradun are looking at unique mix of strategy to sell jewellery in the current fluctuating market conditions. 

"With gold prices rising, white gold, diamonds or platinum is the new trend among the buyers. There is an increasing focus for platinum jewellery this festive season, said Delhi-NCR-based jewellers who owns a diamond jewellery brand. 

The survey reveals that nearly 76% of Jewellers are focusing on platinum-based diamond jewellery over the traditional gold and silver jewellery to tap the changing preferences of domestic consumers. 

Commenting on the trend, D S Rawat, Secretary General, ASSOCHAM said, the platinum-based diamond jewellery is picking up pace in India. The diamond studded platinum jewellery has more demand as diamond studded gold jewellery in metros. 

The survey further reveals that there is an increasing interest among domestic consumers for platinum, diamond jewellery etc. The frequent price fluctuations in gold and silver seem to have drawn attention of jewellery buyers towards platinum and diamond based jewellery, added majority of diamond jewellery makers. 

This Dhanteras, gold jewellery makers have increased their focus on platinum and diamond jewellery, which is likely to gain momentum among young consumer class, added the majority of jewellers. 

According to the ASSOCHAM recent survey, the share of platinum and diamond jewellery in the overall gold jewellery has increased significantly over the past one year and is likely to reach about 30-35 per cent of the total gold jewellery sales in the year 2015. 

The prices of the yellow metal had crossed Rs 32,000 mark during calendar year 2013. On the other hand, industry experts anticipate gold prices to continue fluctuating for some more time as the 
rupee remains weak against the US dollar, said Mr. Rawat. 

Mr. Rawat further said there is tremendous increase in sales of all types of diamond jewellery. On a year-on-year basis, the demand for diamond jewellery has grown by over 25% this year. There is an equal growth in the high-end diamond jewellery, said majority of diamond jewellery makers. 

"Indian investors always had a fascination towards precious metals and stones owing to their hedging ability against rising 
inflation and economic uncertainties. While investing in gold and silver has been going on for years, another investment avenue that is blooming for past few years is platinum, diamond and other investment", added Mr. Rawat. 

The existing prices of platinum, however, offer great investment opportunities to the smart investor to jump on the investment bandwagon. With gold prices reaching astronomical highs, more and more Indian investors are now looking at diamonds and platinum as an equally lucrative investment opportunity, highlights the survey.