Indians to wear platinum as gold prices soar

Featured - June 28th, 2012
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The answer to rising gold prices can be found in hollow gold or white metal, The Wall Street Journal reports.

With the rupee falling against the dollar, gold prices continue to soar, making it harder for the world’s top gold consumer to import the precious metal for jewelry. Gold is sold at 30,000 ($525) to 30,500 rupees for 10 grams.

All India Gems and Jewelry Trade Federation launched an entire line of lightweight gold as an alternative to solid gold. The weight of a 15-20 gram gold necklace can be reduced by 20%, making it cheaper. Bachhraj Bamalwa, president of All India Gems and Jewelry Trade Federation said that demand for lightweight jewelry had picked up and is expected to double over the years.

Platinum prices have also lowered, relative to gold, compared with five years ago. More jewelry stores are selling platinum and they expect demand to grow. Vaishali Banerjee, manager of Platinum Guild International in India told the Journal that “today, there is a lot more awareness and desire for platinum”.

Mr. Bamalwa said that “while awareness about platinum increased, the rise in sales can’t yet be taken as any significant shift from gold”. The shift, nonetheless, reflects the changing tastes of Indian women from the traditional ornate jewelry worn by their ancestors.