Despite festive season, gold losing sheen for local shoppers
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The ongoing festival and approaching wedding season is bringing big money for jewellery stores in the city, even as some of them rue that the sales have decreased since last year.
The present gold rate, per 10 gram, is Rs 29,800 for 22 karat and Rs 30,850 for 24 karat which has registered an all-time high, leading to the buyers struggling to limit their purchases.
"The gold rate at this time, last year, was around Rs 25,850 but with the overall inflation this year, the demand has come down. Gold is for keeps and no one compromises on the quality but they are buying less," says Ranjit Singh, owner of a jewellery store in Sector 35.
Some have come up with special schemes to attract customers. "We are giving a 1 gram gold coin free with a purchase of Rs 20,000 and have announced a lucky draw with three luxury cars to be won. This is done to maintain a goodwill among the retreating market for gold," says Satwinder, a gold jewellery store manager in Sector 22.
Shopkeepers say that the upcoming festival of dhanteras is adding to people holding back purchases.
"With dhanteras only ten days away, some of the average families have celebrated a humble Karva Chauth by going for clothes and mangalsutra and holding back on bigger purchases till dhanteras, which is anyway the peak time for sales," says Satwinder.
There are others, however, who differ. "It depends on where you are placed and bling will never go out of demand in Chandigarh. People go for smaller pieces or lesser weight but gold is a part of our rituals and their cannot be any alternative," says Dhruv, who runs a jewellery shop in Sector 22.
Shopkeepers say that the footfall has dipped by around 15 per cent in comparison to the usual sales during the festive season.
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