Jewellers all set to cash in on Akshaya Tritiya

Observers feel there may not be much enthusiasm in market, but jewellers pin hope on Indians’ innate craving for yellow metal.

Come May 2, jewellers in the Port City are all set to see the cash registers ringing on the ‘auspicious day’ of Akshaya Tritiya. Though the exorbitant price of the yellow metal is looming large, jewellers are keeping their fingers crossed to repeat a good business like last year. 

Advance booking, special discount, free gold coins for big purchases, sale of special gold coins which are claimed to be blessed with the pooja held at Sree Padmanabha temple, Thiruvananthapuram etc are various offers put up by jewellers on May 2. Almost every jeweller has announced the extension of working hours on the day.

“We are expecting good business this time too but could not give a figure as the price has gone up,” said Ratheesh, Assistant Manager at Jos Alukkas jewellers, at Hampankatta. In 2013, the two showrooms of Jos Alukkas in the city had a total sale of 20-25 kg of gold on the day. The price of gold was Rs 2,600 per gram on last Akshaya Tritiya day whereas now it stands at Rs 2,830. 

Suresh Shenoy, the Manager at Aabharan Jewellary, Mangalore, said that an increase of 15 to 20 per cent of sales have been witnessed on Akshaya Tritiya days. “There will be a demand for gold coins too unlike the other days. Still, 90 per cent of the sales are of ornaments only,” he says. The Manager of Sulthan Gold, Mangalore, M S Umesh was of the opinion that Akshaya Tritiya has transcended the barrier of religion and now a days customers, regardless of community are eager to buy the yellow metal on the particular day. “The day has stood ground as an auspicious occasion for buying gold without any community tag. We are getting nearly four times more business on the day.” He says that the goddess of Lakshmi is affordable to common man also as a 100 milli gram cold coin will cost around Rs 300/400 only. The creamy section of the society prefers diamond to buy off as to make a wise investment decision on the day.

Spoilsport?

Indian gold price has registered an up of 12.3 per cent since last Akshaya Tritiya (between May 13, 2013 and April 28, 2014), as the rupee has seen a fall and there is tighter supply due to gold import restrictions. This is the reason for trade observers to speculate that this time there would not be much enthusiasm in the market. But Indians’ innate craving for the metal knew no reason, and it is exactly where, jewellers are pinning their hope on.

Investing in gold exchange traded funds (ETF) also will get a slight push on the day. Ganesh, the Manager of Angel Broking Limited at Balmatta says that though ETF trading depends chiefly on national as well as international gold rates, on Akshaya Tritiya day he would get a few calls enquiring over ETF investment. “There will be a marginal rise in the local market. People see gold as an investment and hence exploring various options to do away with the cost of holding the metal and making charges. For those customers, ETF is best,” he stressed.

 ‘New-age festival’

Prof Rajaram Tolpady, the Chairman of Department of Political Science at Mangalore University noted that unlike Ugadi, Deepavali, Nagapanchami etc., Akshaya Tritiya is in no way linked to agrarian activities. 

“My guess is that this new-age festival rightly fits into the slot of business as well as the hard core religious way, Hindutwa,” he said.

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