Global demand for gold increased 10 per cent in the calendar year 2021, led by improved economic growth and investors’ sentiment during the October-December quarter, the Word Gold Council said on Friday.
Gold demand jumped almost 50 per cent in the period, thereby hitting a 10-quarter high.
The total demand for the yellow metal was at 4,021 tonnes, excluding the “over the counter” figures.
“Demand for gold in the consumer-driven jewellery and technology sectors recovered throughout the year in line with economic growth and sentiment, while central bank buying also far outpaced that of 2020. Investment demand was mixed in an environment of opposing forces: high inflation competed with rising yields for investors’ attention,” the council added.
Jewellery fabrication staged a strong recovery in 2021 and it grew 67 per cent to 2,221 tonnes in 2021.
“This was in good part linked to Q4 demand, which – at 713 tonnes – saw the strongest quarterly jewellery consumption since Q2 2013,” the council said.
Global holdings of gold ETFs fell by 173 tonnes in 2021 in sharp contrast to 2020’s record 874 tonnes rise.
Bar and coin investment jumped 31 per cent to an eight-year high of 1,180 tonnes.
“Central banks accumulated 463 tonnes of gold in 2021, 82 per cent higher than the 2020 total and lifting global reserves to a near 30-year high. The pace of buying slowed in the second half, with a 22 per cent Y-o-Y decline in Q4.”
Further, gold used in technology rose nine per cent in 2021, to reach a three-year high of 330 tonnes.