People have been watching with fascination gold going into a tailspin in the last few days and this has triggered a virtual gold rush at jewellery outlets with traders recording an upsurge in customer footfall.

The price of gold, which was hovering around Rs.2,800 for a gram (22 carat) a week ago, slumped to Rs.2,442 on Monday and 24-carat gold, which traded at around Rs.3,000 a gram last week, was Rs.2,640 for a gram.

Jewellery outlets say they have registered a 30 per cent rise in customer footfall over the last three days, leading to higher volumes of sales.

Akshaya Tritiya

Sreehari R.K., associate head of the C. Krishniah Chetty & Sons, said: “We are expecting a large number of customers before the Akshaya Tritiya festival, which falls on May 13, since prices have fallen tremendously.”

But he hurries to add that since gold is such a volatile commodity, it is difficult to predict the variation.

Vasantha Nanjundappa was one among the many in Bangalore who wasted no time in making the most of the sudden fall in gold prices, happily splurging on a piece of jewellery on Monday for an upcoming wedding she had to attend.

Thrilled by the plummeting price, she said was also buying gold in advance for Akshaya Tritiya as “the price is really low now”. And yes, she confessed she was hoping the price would fall further.

Kushal Kumar, cashier at Sri Krishna Diamonds and Jewellery, also confirmed people were buying the precious metal in advance for Akshaya Tritiya due to the uncertainty.

Bumper business

The increase in demand for gold jewellery in the wake of the price slump is believed to have brought pressure on the wholesale market.

S. Venkatesh Babu, former president of the Bangalore Jewellers Association, said: “Such a steep fall has rarely occurred in the past and this phase might be a period of chaos for investors. The fall has led to a bumper business for the jewellery sector.”

The price of one gram of 22-carat gold ranged from Rs. 2,795 to Rs. 2,555 over the past three days, depending on the labour charge across shops in the city.

The price of 24-carat gold during the period ranged from Rs. 2,865 to Rs. 2,700 per gram.

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