Business news from Ukraine

India continues to increase purchase of gold

India imported $6.15 billion worth of gold in February 2023, according to the country’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

This is 2.3 times more than in February last year, 3.2 times more than in January this year and in general about twice the traditional average monthly levels.

That said, India Bullion and Jewellers Association president Prithviraj Kothari predicts that imports may not be significant in March due to record high gold prices. “Consumers cannot digest the current price level. If prices remain this high, it will affect demand in the current wedding season,” he told Reuters. – It makes no sense for banks and refiners to import.”

In January-February, India’s gold imports totaled $8.06 billion, 2.4 times the result of the corresponding period last year.

By the end of 2023, India imported almost 744 tons of gold worth $42.58 billion. In physical terms, the volume increased by 4%, in value terms – by 16%.

India is one of the largest consumers of gold in the world, practically not producing it itself.
Earlier, the analytical center Experts Club presented an overview of world economies over the past decades. More video analysis is available here –

, , ,

World gold prices hit an all-time high

The price of gold reached an all-time high in trading on Wednesday and continues to rise.

Quotes for April contracts on the New York Stock Exchange Comex on Thursday rose by 0.3% to $2163.9 per ounce. The previous trading session ended at a record high of $2158.2 per ounce.

The rally is supported by a weaker US dollar and lower government bond yields, Trading Economics notes. This, in turn, is due to hopes that the Federal Reserve will soon begin to cut interest rates amid the deteriorating situation in the country’s economy. On Wednesday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that it would probably be advisable to ease monetary policy “at some point this year.”

Based on futures quotes on the rate, traders currently estimate a 70% probability of a Fed rate cut in June.

“Gold is likely to move higher as bullish sentiment remains dominant,” said Tai Wong, an independent metals trader based in New York. – “However, it may take some time for the market to digest Powell’s comments and also to see Friday’s employment report.

Experts expect that the number of jobs in the US economy in February increased by 200 thousand (after an increase of 353 thousand the previous month), and unemployment remained at 3.7%.

Analysts predict further growth in gold and silver prices

UBS analysts predict a further increase in gold and silver prices in 2024 on expectations that the US Federal Reserve will move to lower interest rates.

“We expect the Fed’s policy easing to drive gold higher,” said precious metals analyst Johnny Teves, adding that a weaker dollar would also contribute to this.

He predicts that the price of gold will reach $2200 per ounce by the end of this year, CNBC reports.

As interest rates fall, gold becomes more attractive compared to alternative investments such as bonds. At the same time, lower rates weaken the dollar, making gold cheaper for international buyers, which leads to an increase in demand.

Despite the fact that there is still a lot of uncertainty about the timing and extent of rate cuts, UBS still expects the Federal Reserve to move to ease monetary policy.

The attractiveness of gold as a safe haven increased amid the deteriorating geopolitical situation in the Middle East last October. In January, prices reached a record $2100 per ounce.

“We think that investors will invest in gold in the face of great macroeconomic uncertainty and geopolitical risks,” Tevez said. The prospects for silver, the “poorer cousin,” are also optimistic, and it is likely to “really shine,” he said.

“We think that silver can succeed in the scenario of easing the QE,” the expert said. According to him, the rate of rise in the value of silver may outpace the growth of gold.

According to the Silver Institute, global demand for silver will increase by 1% in 2024 and reach 1.2 billion ounces. If the expectations are met, this will be the second highest figure in history.

“Increased industrial demand is the main catalyst for the growth of global demand for the metal,” the industry association said in a statement.

Global silver supplies are expected to grow by 3% to 1.02 billion ounces, which could be the highest in eight years.

Quotes of gold futures contracts during trading on Friday are down 0.5% to $2021.6 per ounce. Silver is up 0.5% to $22.67 per ounce.


5 criminals and gold items worth €60 mln arrested in Madrid

In Madrid, law enforcers arrested 5 members of the criminal network, which was engaged in the illegal export of cultural property from Ukraine, during the arrest were seized 11 gold items worth more than €60 million, reports the National police of Spain.

“Operatives arrested five people, thus eliminating the criminal network engaged in the illegal export of cultural property from Ukraine. The seized items – gold jewelry of great historical and economic value – were stolen, illegally exported and were to be sold in Madrid,” reads the report published on the website of the Spanish police on Monday.

The investigation was reportedly carried out with the participation of the attachés for internal affairs of Bulgaria, Ukraine, Albania, Northern Macedonia and Cyprus, as well as the International Cooperation Division.

The investigation found that the criminals, in order to conceal the origin of the jewelry, accompanied them with documents in Ukrainian, English and Spanish, which confirmed their belonging to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

At the same time, the defendants transferred ownership and the right to dispose of them to the main suspect in the case, an Orthodox priest who lives in Madrid.

Investigators first seized the gold belt with rams’ heads from the main suspect in 2021, when the priest tried to sell it privately to a businessman in Madrid.

Thanks to cooperation with the Security Service of Ukraine, the Spanish police established that the jewelry, which was placed as exhibits at an exhibition held in a museum in Kiev between 2009 and 2013, fell into the hands of the priest, who in collusion with a second person of the same nationality and with the help of third parties forged documents confirming the origin of cultural property and accreditation of its owner.

As a result of the investigation, it was found that the jewelry was illegally exported from Ukraine until May 2016.

It is noted that all seized items belong to the Greco-Scythian culture VIII-IV centuries BC, at the moment they are under study in the National Archaeological Museum and the Spanish Institute of cultural heritage.

Law enforcers are continuing their investigation.


Gold prices may hit all-time highs – international analysts

Gold prices could hit all-time highs next year on fears of a global recession and thanks to the end of a cycle of interest rate hikes by the world’s key central banks, analysts predict, with the most radical estimates calling for quotes to rise to $2500 an ounce.

“My target is $2500 by the end of 2024. This is largely due to the fact that recessionary factors could intensify towards the end of the year and gain strength in 2024,” wrote David Neuhauser, founder of Livermore Partners. – “I think gold will renew highs next year and go even higher.

“I’m pretty confident we’ll see gold at $2500 in the next couple years,” said Wheaton Precious Metals head Randy Smallwood, also pointing to recessionary signals as a positive for the precious metal.

The current quote record was set on August 7, 2020 at $2072.5 per troy ounce.

“I think gold will exceed the $2100 mark in late 2023 or early 2024,” said TD Securities managing director Bart Melek, adding that his forecast is based on the assumption that the Fed will take a pause in raising rates.

Gold has performed better than most other asset classes over the past 12 months, Melek pointed out. In his opinion, this shows the resilience of the precious metal in the face of rising interest rates and its value as a reliable asset that provides protection against inflation.

Quotes of December gold contracts on New York’s Comex exchange were up 0.1% to $1951 per troy ounce by 3:05 p.m. Q3:05 p.m. Friday.

Central banks returned to gold purchases

In June, the world central banks returned to gold purchases and, according to preliminary estimates of the World Gold Council (WGC), purchased 55.4 tons of gold into the gold and foreign exchange reserves. For comparison: in May, according to revised data, there was an outflow of 26.6 tons.

In June, Turkey returned to purchases (increased its reserves by 11.4 tons), which supported the general trend. The largest buyer was China (21.2 tons), as well as Poland (13.7 tons), Uzbekistan (8.4 tons), Czech Republic (2.5 tons), Qatar (1.6 tons), etc. were buying gold for reserves.

Only Kazakhstan (3.2 tons) and Singapore (1 ton) turned out to be large net sellers.