Americans take advantage of low gold price to adorn themselves in jewellery
As the gold price tumbles past the much-feared $1,200 mark, consumer demand for gold is soaring in the US.
According to a Reuters report, the US gold jewellery industry "is on track for its highest sales for the fourth quarter since 2010 and its first annual increase in gold sales in more than a decade."
Retailers have been discounting their wares as gold suppliers finish off one of their worst years in recent history; the gold price has fallen from $1,600 per ounce at the beginning of the year to as low as $1,195 today.
Reuters also attributes the rise in consumer demand to the fact that the US economy is growing at its fastest pace in nearly two years, while the unemployment rate recently hit a five-year low.
One jeweller told Reuters that he estimates sales at his Manhattan store will increase by as much as 20% compared to 2012.
But a boost in consumer demand for gold won't provide much relief to miners. About one-third of gold demand is for investment purposes, which declined by 65% this year, according to the World Gold Council's latest quarterly report.
Also, US consumer demand pales in comparison to India's and China's appetites for gold – these two make up about 60% of global consumer gold demand.