The gold rush is on in two of the world's biggest consumer markets following a price plummet in April. A growing number of buyers in China and India are jumping into the market and driving demand for jewelry, coins and bars.
India's gold imports are expected to rise 47 percent during April, May and June, from 153 metric tons to 225, according to the All India Gems & Jewellery Trade Federation. In April alone, the business sector's gold imports soared 138 percent higher than April of the previous year. Desire for gold in India is so intense that imports forced the trade deficit to a three-month high of $17.8 billion as gold reached 18 percent of India's total imports, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
In China, households purchased jewelry during April at a rate 72 percent above that of April 2012, significantly higher than the 17.7 percent rate year over year in Q1, according to the Societe Generale Group. SocGen says jewelry sales in China may have more to do with savings than consumption.
London sparked a gold bear market in mid-April as investors sold bullion in favor of riskier assets in anticipation of a global economy comeback.