Despite the promotional offers and discounts jewellers were doling out to lure customers, Akshaya Tritiya sales were lackluster this time. Trading at the exchange-traded fund (ETF) counter too was the lowest in the last five years, reports mydigitalfc.com.
“Sales on the auspicious day were disappointing this time. As per the reports I get from different jewelers across the four regions, sales were 30 per cent down compared to last year. The general gloom in gold sales along with the restrictions on carrying cash and valuables during election time has actually affected consumer sentiment,” said HareshSoni, chairman of the All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation.
According to him, footfalls were more or less the same, but ticket sizes were less as customers preferred to buy lighter jewellery as if just making a token purchase to mark the occasion. And they bought jewellery rather than gold coins and bars, sales of which were “very less” compared to last year.
In south India, sales were however less only by 5-10 per cent. In other regions, sales were more than 35 per cent down.
“The sales during the season as such have been lower by 30 per cent compared to last year,” added MehulChoksi, chirman and managing director, Gitanjali Group. For Gitanjali, the ratio of gold and diamond jewellery sales remained 85:15 per cent this time as well.
Diamond jewellery sales were even lower by 50 per cent against last year. However, some jewelers who focused on diamond jewellery saw customers making their postponed purchases on Akshaya Tritiya. “The trend this year indicates more sales of diamond jewellery with about half the sales coming from pre-bookings. This is in line with our business model and is expected to give a fillip to our margins for the day,” VikramRaizada, executive director and chief executive officer (retail), Tara Jewels said.
Gold ETF turnover on NSE stood at Rs 53 crore against Rs 691 crore last year. The trade volumes on Akshaya Tritiya have been growing during the past four years. Both the exchanges had extended trading hours for gold ETFs till 7 pm on the day. BSE had also waived the transaction charges for ETFs.
Trading was lacklustre last Dhanteras as well, when trade value in both the stock exchanges declined around 50 per cent to Rs 338 crore from Rs 661 crore in the previous year’s festival.