Jul 15, 2020

World Gold Council Expects India’s H2 Consumer Demand To Remain Soft

Investors have embraced gold in 2020 as a key portfolio hedging strategy, said the World Gold Council (WGC) in its latest report titled, Gold mid-year outlook 2020: Recovery paths and impact on performance. In its gold market outlook released on 14th July, WGC examines how the combination of high risk, low opportunity cost and positive price momentum looks set to support gold investment and offset weakness in consumption from an economic contraction.

The WGC said that gold had a remarkable performance in the first half of 2020, increasing by 16.8% in US-dollar terms and significantly outperforming all other major asset classes. By the end of June, the LBMA Gold Price PM was trading close to US$1,770/oz, a level not seen since 2012, and gold prices were reaching record or near-record highs in all other major currencies.

The WGC informed that the Indian economy slowed to an 11-year low of 3.1% in Q1 2020. In order to stimulate the economy amid the Covid-19 outbreak, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cut interest rates by a cumulative 115bps in H1 2020 and the Central Government, along with RBI, provided an economic package of Rs.20.97 trillion (US$278 billion).

WGC said it expects consumer demand in India in the second half of 2020 to remain soft due to reduced economic activity, concerns about increasing unemployment, and income erosion. However, additional economic packages from the government and a forecasted positive monsoon season could help soften the negative impact of an economic deceleration. “Additionally, we expect investors to turn to gold as a means of hedging as we have seen in the first half of this year,” it added.

Caption: Gold bars stored in vaulted secure storage.

Credit: © World Gold Council