Mar 27, 2018

Global Platinum Jewellery Demand to Grow 2% in 2018 After Four Years of Decline, Says WPIC

Global demand for platinum jewellery is estimated to grow by 45 koz  to 2,505 koz in 2018, up +2% over 2017, thus ending four consecutive years of decline, the World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC) said in its recently released Platinum Quarterly.

The change will be mainly due to the forecast of marginal growth in China, by far the largest consumer of platinum jewellery, supported by growth in other significant markets such as India, Japan, North America and Europe.

Overall global demand for platinum across industries and other uses, is forecast to grow marginally to 7,790 koz, as a recovery in industrial demand and an increase in jewellery demand outweigh a decline in automotive demand and slightly lower investment demand.

Paul Wilson, CEO, said, “An expected rebound in jewellery demand plays a significant role in what is expected to be a tighter 2018 for the platinum market than 2017, showing that the market is moving in the right direction.”

In China, platinum demand from the jewellery sector, which was 1,990 koz in 2013, had dipped to 1,340 koz last year, WPIC reported, adding that most jewellers saw sales improve in the second half of the year, a trend that immediately benefitted gold more than platnum.

However,WPIC believes that on the back of accelerated GDP growth in China last year, spending in third-tier cities has increased. As jewellers have been expanding their points of sale across the country particularly in such cities and also targeting their marketing at consumers there, 2017 could well mark the bottom of the curve. The bridal market is expected to decline again in 2018, but self-purchasing by women has demonstrated the potential to replace some of this demand, WPIC noted.

In India, too, last year jewellery sales were impacted by demonetisation, the introduction of GST and application of an antimoney laundering legislation, which was repealed in Q4’17. WPIC states that as the lingering issues of GST implementation are sorted out, there is little to prevent 2018 from being a strong year for sales. It added that while there will be continued demand growth for platinum jewellery in India 2018, it would be at a lower absolute level than previously expected.

The trade body also said that while Japan is expected to see little change in jewellery demand in 2018, but strong economic growth forecasts in the US and Europe, alongside a reasonably favourable platinum price, should support growth in those regions.