RSBL Gold Silver Bars/Coins

Friday, 26 February 2016

Pre-Budget 2016: Views of RSBL - Mr. Prithviraj Kothari & Importance of GST for Bullion Sector

                                                                                                                    By Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

The transcript of the video is as follows:

Anchor: How significant is goods and services tax (GST) for bullion industry?

Mr. Kothari:  Implementation of GST should be expedited for all round growth of our economy including supply chain, sourcing and distribution decisions, inventory cost, cash flows, pricing policy, accounting system and transactions management. The government should levy on bullion flat GST which would replace most indirect taxes like small local taxes, LBT, octroi etc currently in place. Not only that, there will be an ease in documentation too. 

Anchor: Government of India has focused reducing import of gold. Has time come to focus on gold mining in India?

Mr. Kothari: India is rich in mineral resources. But, because of poor research and development (R&D), gold mining has been at bay. Despite huge resources, total production from domestic mines constitutes between 1-3 tonnes out of India’s estimated consumption of 1000 tonnes. On the other hand, China boosted its gold refining business after allow single-window clearance along with fiscal and infrastructure incentives which has put the industry on fast track. China reported total gold production at 451.8 tonnes in 2014, up by 5-52 per cent from the previous year, and become the largest gold producer in the world eighth year consecutively. India needs to focus on R&D in an effective way to reduce dependence on import and therefore, foreign direct investment (FDI) in R&D should be expedited. Moreover there are lot of issues with mining like the local MLA issue, local population of a particular area concerns etc. Due to these issues, mining has lot of limitations.

Anchor: With such issues, mining will remain just a dream for India.

Mr. Kothari: See, today somebody invests and starts mining and then people come forward with a stay on it. So who will invest money in India? The government should provide single window, frame only one policy that clearing, environment, all will be issued by the central government. State government will have no say. The emerging revenue issues should be decided state versus centre.

Anchor: Despite repeated request, the government has not yet reduced import duty on gold. Do you expect the same in the upcoming budget?

Mr. Kothari:  Bullion dealers and jewellery manufacturers have sent several representations to the government for reduction in import duty from the existing 10% to 2% to provide a fillip to the domestic jewellery sector. Domestic jewellery buyers stayed away from fresh purchase since long amid expectations of cut in import duty.

Anchor: You have said earlier something that commodity exchanges are the best tools for hedging the price risk? Is the current system of trade sufficient or the government should do something else?

Mr. Kothari:   See, in the last conference we held, our Shaktikant Dasji had said that there should be a bullion bank. Indian Bullion Jewellers Association, I and others together worked out on the concept and have tied-up with BSE to establish an Exchange and Bullion Bank, subject to RBI clarification. So, if these things happen, the disparity the people have in the market today will reduce very much. According to me, if the bullion bank is there, the prevalent difference of parity and disparity (will be reduced to great extent). Sometimes, the premium becomes 13 Dollars, 20 Dollars, 30 Dollars and sometimes even minus 30 Dollars. So, during the minus period we cannot re-export them. So, in my opinion, the government should open a bullion bank here wherein if you deposit gold, you will also get benefit over that and (if) you want to re-export that, you can re-export through the Re-export Bank. Thus, to great extent, there would be support to the economy and in a way, the economy will boom.

Anchor: Take intercepts from your last interview, you had stated that Gold Bond and Monetization scheme are very good initiatives from the government. But the stats portray a different picture. What the government should adopt to make it more successful?

Mr. Kothari:  See, the initiatives by the government are very good. Until today, no government has taken such initiatives. One problem that is hindering its success is the gold deposit scheme. Today gold is lying in every household. If you ask them its sources it is very difficult for them to provide as it could be lying for ten years, twenty years, thirty years, forty years, since their grandparents time. Thus the government should do something like, you may say, a concession should be given up to 500 grams of deposit. Second emerging issue is that there of the jewellery. When the jewellery is melted there is a loss in the elements. Some steps would have to be taken to take into account the loss issue. With respect to the sovereign bond scheme, liquidity in the market is tight. Otherwise, the scheme is very good wherein 2.75% interest is also available. But with it, currently the market conditions aren’t favoring it. For example, the prevailing price was 27,000 and price of that sovereign bond was 26,000, even in that some 2700 plus crores rupees came. Thus, with this it is clearly visible that there is very much liquidity crisis in the market.

Anchor: To sum it up, any additional points to expect from the government with respect to BUDGET 2016?

Mr. Kothari: I hope that the ban on gold trading levied by the government on SEZ (Special Economic Zone) should be lifted. It would boost the exports in a major way. I hope that bullion bank and bullion exchange only for gold wherein the government itself would borrow from and lend into.

Anchor: Thank you so much Sir for your time. If you could throw some light on the Trade range; for Gold price during the Budget week and thereafter?

Mr. Kothari: With the geopolitical tensions and the economies faltering, I do see a good support for the Gold prices for a while. USD 1070 should act as a strong support while USD 1300 should act as a strong resistance. In rupee terms INR 25,500 to INR 33000 should be a trade range to look for in Gold prices.

Thank you!

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The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.
- Previous blog -

Sunday, 21 February 2016


By Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

So far 2016 has been subjugated by the fall out in Chinese equities and the consequent short selling of other asset classes as a proxy hedge.

Gold continued to rally this week as it gained by the strengthening of the yen which suggests that there is constant safe haven buying which does not fit too well with the pick-up in equities and industrial metals this week.

Gold soared 1 percent on Wednesday, breaking a three-day losing streak to trade above the key $1,200-an-ounce level as Asian shares and the dollar slipped.

Bullion rallied to a one-year high last week after a stock market rout boosted demand for the yellow metal as a safe haven, but has since given up some gains as equities steadied. With stocks slipping again on Wednesday, gold was back in focus.

Speculation has increased in recent days that the Fed might resort to negative interest rates to stimulate the economy after Fed Chair Janet Yellen said last week it was an option that would not be taken "off the table." Lower or negative rates would boost demand for non-interest-paying gold. Concerns remain that gold could correct further as some
Analysts say gold gained too much, too quickly.

The gold price fell during Asian trading hours on Friday after rallying overnight to a week’s high of $1,240.10 per ounce. But see the yellow metal remained well-supported on global economic uncertainty. 

Spot gold was last at $1,226.70-1,227 per ounce, down $3.80 from Thursday’s close.

The gold price had rallied overnight following a pull-back in US equities and weaker oil prices. 

Recently the analysts and market players have become more alarmed about

  • The state of the global economy and
  • The risk of debt default and
  • Equity weakness
Gold’s positive and negative movements over the week were influenced by the following-

Oil Prices- Oil prices had risen more than 14 percent this week after Saudi Arabia, Russia, Venezuela and Qatar said they would freeze oil output at January levels as long as other producers also participate. Iran’s oil minister had welcomed the plan but did not commit to it.

The oil price rally also halted after Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister was reported as saying that Saudi Arabia was “not prepared” to cut production, scuttling hopes of a deal by major producers to cut output in an oversupplied market. 

Global Economic growth- Global economic growth remains friable with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) cutting its global growth forecast on Thursday by 0.3 percent to three percent for 2016 as it warns of slowing economies in Brazil, Germany and the US, and exchange rate volatility in some emerging markets. 

The OECD on Thursday reports that some emerging markets are particularly vulnerable to sharp exchange-rate movements and the effects of high domestic debt.

Economic Data- Major economic data released on Thursday was mixed with a slight negative bias. China’s January PPI was -5.3 percent, a gentler decline than the forecast -5.5 percent and December’s -5.9 percent. January was the 47th straight month of decline, however. 

Weekly US unemployment claims came in at 262,000, below the forecast of 275,000 and under the psychological 300,000 mark. The Philly Fed manufacturing index for February at -2.8 was close to the -2.9 estimate. 

But the US CB leading index disappointed at -0.2 percent against a forecast of -0.1 percent Meanwhile in data, US CPI and Core CPI month-over-month in January came in unchanged and an increase of 0.3 percent respectively, both were above forecasts of a -0.1 decline and 0.2 percent gain.

Gold Demand- Physical demand slowed during the Chinese Lunar New Year, but global demand is also suffering as consumers and well-stocked jewellery manufacturers hold off while waiting for the price of gold to drop, according to multiple gold traders.

The gold price increased modestly for the third consecutive day as a safe-haven rally is being thwarted by weak physical demand.

Monetary policies- Market participants also await further monetary decisions out of the Eurozone and China, which has drawn closer scrutiny after the Japanese central bank decided to lower nominal interest rates into negative territory for the first time in history.
A lack of inflation and threats of another global recession has led central bankers to adopt looser monetary policy and aggressively combat sagging growth.

Market participants appear content to wait until monetary decisions out of the Eurozone and China become clearer.

The recent decision by the Japanese central bank to lower interest rates into negative territory has led other regions to consider the same action.
A lack of inflation and threats of another global recession are forcing central bankers to adopt looser monetary policy and aggressively combat sagging growth.

Till then we need to wait and watch and this seems to be the only mantra as the mart once again stands divided into a bear v/s bull market for gold.

The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.
- Previous blog -
" Gold Glitters All The Wayl: RSBL"

Sunday, 14 February 2016


By Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL 

As I mentioned last week in my blog that gold is regaining its safe haven appeal, this week we saw this sentiment strengthening further.
Gold was like literally all over the world this week as we saw the yellow metal gaining its safe haven appeal in its true sense after a long wait. Sentiment in the gold market remained sturdy after prices hit a one-year high in a figurative move.
This was the third consecutive week that gold witnessed positive gains, with increasing more than 5.3%- the biggest weekly percentage gain since late October 2011.

Analysts have noted that the yellow metal’s push back above $1,200 an ounce generated a lot of focus and positive sentiment among appalling investors looking for a safe-haven.
Many analysts are bullish on gold, expecting sentiment to continue to grow as prices have broken through key technical barriers, culminating in a weekly high at $1,263.90 an ounce.
Spot gold was last at $1,240.50/1,241.20 per ounce, having rallied around 22 percent since the start of the year.
The gold price rallied to a high on Thursday of $1,263.30 per ounce, up five percent and it’s strongest since February 6 last year when it peaked at $1,268.90.

Since this rally came in suddenly, there were many investors that missed on to bank on the gains. The speed of the rally and its strength suggest many would-be investors have been chasing prices, having not been able to take advantage earlier in the rally – they had lost faith in gold as a safe-haven given the four-year bear market.
This volatility was influenced by more than one factor. It was a combined effort of the following-
Dollar- Sentiment towards gold has changed dramatically, and gold has even moved up on some days in the face of a dollar rally. With a change in sentiment, those underweight or waiting on the sidelines started buying gold which furtherer fuelled gold prices.
The precious metal benefitted from a softer dollar, which had failed to attract safe-haven demand despite the global instability – the currency was last trading at a four-month low at $1.1349 against the euro.
A softer dollar is making gold more affordable for holders of other currencies – it has fallen around four percent this month, having already rallied strongly over the past 14 months – the dollar index climbed to 100.50 in December from around 70 in January last year and was last at 95.58.
Fed- As part of a two-day congressional hearing, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen attempted to reassure markets that US growth was steady and the labor market was improving.
Yellen and her fellow colleagues are being criticized for exacerbating the instability after raising rates in December – rates were static around 0 percent since December 2008.
And the US Federal Reserve, having raised rates in December for the first time in nine years, has not ruled out a push into negative territory. The chances of further rises this year have receded significantly, according to market consensus.
Because gold has no yield, it loses some of its luster when interest rates are rising. But negative interest rates negate this disadvantage while highlighting economic weakness against which gold is historically seen as a hedge and preferred as one of the safest modes of investments compared to its counterpart.

China- since the Chinese markets remained closed for the Lunar Celebration, there was nil reaction from that side and hence gold prices shot up one side.
With China absent from the market for its New Year holidays this week, the market now waits to see the reaction of Chinese investors upon their return on Monday, particularly as the US will be absent on this day for Presidents day.
All eyes will be glued to the return of the Chinese markets as investors are eager to see what they actually bring to the surface post this week’s volatile developments.

Equity- The gold price benefited from the meltdown in equity markets, as the yellow metal continued to hold around one-year highs. Weak equity markets have spooked investors and they promptly dumped risky assets and rushed to gold, which is seen as a safe-haven.

Other Economies-
Uncertainty about global growth and a mass sell-off in global equity markets unsettled investors, burnishing gold’s safe-haven qualities, while Japan, Switzerland, Sweden and Denmark have adopted negative interest rates.
European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi is expected to follow suit at the bank’s March meeting, citing inconsistent growth concerns and non-existent price increases.
Since the decision, Japan lowered deposit rates into negative territory and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi is expected to implement the same policy as soon as March.
Both economic regions are struggling with poor economic growth and non-existent inflation despite billions in easy money and years of near-zero interest rates.
Negative interest rates are generally good for gold as the improbability and agony linked with negative rates tends to surge interest in gold, but the more distinct shift of monetary policy in this direction by central banks is encouraging even greater flows into bullion.

Although it is a shortened week with markets closed Monday for Presidents Day, the U.S. economic calendar will be busy with the release of regional manufacturing reports, housing sector data, and the release of the Consumer Price Index for January.

While analysts are positive on the gold market, they are not ruling out some weakness at the start of the week.

The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.
- Previous blog -
" Gold Regaining Its Safe Haven Appeal: RSBL"