The demand for platinum jewellery is picking up fast in India, as the price of the precious white metal is falling below that of gold. Retailers in the country saw a whopping 40-50 percent increase in demand for platinum jewellery during February and March, a trend they expect to continue, as the wedding season starts from next month.
In Indian markets, the price of platinum is now trading at around Rs 26,300 per 10 gm, slightly below gold price of 26,600 per 10 gm.
Gold is also trading lower in global markets due to reduced investor appetite and slowing demand from China.
"There are two factors that are driving the platinum jewellery demand in India. First of all, Platinum Guild India has launched wedding collection in platinum under the brand name Evara, which has given more choice to urban young India. Secondly, a drop in prices has further fuelled demand in the market," Kalpanik Choksi, director of Ishwarlal Harjivandas Jewellers, Ahmedabad, told The Economic Times.
Indian retailers are of the view that the educated younger generation is ready to try platinum jewellery, as it explores new options.
"The young crowd likes the natural colour of platinum. They largely belong to the upper middle and affluent sections of society. But as prices have fallen, even middle class people are looking at platinum now. Evara range was launched in November and since then, we have sold 20 platinum necklaces. Overall in the current fiscal, we are expecting platinum demand to go up by 20-25%," Choksi added.
A recent survey by Platinum Guild International (PGI) revealed the changing consumer profile of platinum in the country, with people in the age group of 15 to 30 years accounting for 85 percent of demand for the metal.
Indian accounted for 38 percent of global demand for platinum jewellery in 2014, according to a report by the World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC), which says the increasing demand trend will extend through 2015.