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Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back

Platinum jewellery demand is tipped to bounce back in 2021 to more than 2 million ounces, around pre-pandemic levels.
Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back Platinum jewellery demand set to bounce back

Platinum body eyes demand growth, retail recovery

Staff reporter

The World Platinum Investment Council said yesterday jewellery demand was expected to increase 13% year-on-year after a 13% drop in 2020.

Overall demand for platinum was set to total 7.9Moz in 2021, resulting in a market deficit of 60,000oz, the council had said earlier this month.

It said volumes turned the corner in the final quarter of 2020, when platinum jewellery demand exceeded pre-pandemic levels, rising by 7% when compared with the same quarter in 2019.

The WPIC said this was due to an "especially strong recovery" from strategic retail partners in the US and India, citing Platinum Guild International, a Hong Kong-based body funded by leading South Africa producers.

Platinum's favourable price compared with gold continued to present an opportunity for platinum jewellery across many regions, the WPIC added.

It said in 2020, platinum imports into China surged by 23% to the highest level since 2013, as some jewellery manufacturers took the opportunity of low prices in the early days of the pandemic to increase working stock.

The platinum price has risen from US$721 an ounce a year ago to $1,306/oz in February and was $1,183/oz on the spot market at the time of writing, below gold's $1,715/oz.

South Africa-based platinum group metals producers have reported record results in recent weeks, buoyed by rising prices, a weaker rand and a strong operational performance following the country's COVID-19 lockdown. 

European jewellery demand was expected to enjoy a "robust increase" this year but the WPIC said sales within Europe could remain soft, as long-haul tourism stayed muted and the region's economic recovery proved modest.