Gold Demand Remains Strong

August 10, 2000

Gold Demand Remains Strong

The demand for gold continues to hold steady in 2000, the World Gold Council reported. Total demand for the second quarter of 2000 in the countries monitored was 789 metric tons, down 2% from the second quarter of 1999. Total demand for the first half of 2000 equaled 1,584.2 metric tons, 0.6% lower than the first half of last year.

The demand for gold jewelry in the second quarter was up 1% from the same quarter last year to 695.3 metric tons. Jewelry demand for the first half of 2000 increased to 1,396.4 metric tons, 4% higher than the first half of 1999. Jewelry demand increased significantly in many countries. Demand in Turkey went up 49%, and demand in Thailand increased 69%. Other strong increases were 17% in Mexico, 22% in Malaysia, 13% in Taiwan and 12% in the United Kingdom.

Demand for gold as an investment remained low in the second quarter, falling 22% below the level during the second quarter last year. For the first half of 2000, investment demand was 187.8 metric tons, a 26% decrease from the first half of 1999.

"The strength of worldwide demand for gold during the second quarter and first half of this year is encouraging, especially in the face of continued weakness in the demand for gold as an investment," says Haruko Fukuda, CEO of the World Gold Council. "Physical demand often experiences some seasonal weakness during the first half of the year, and yet demand was maintained in spite of both a higher average price of $280 an ounce during the period and the fact that the price remained well above the 20-year lows reached last summer."

The report on current gold demand titled "Gold Demand Trends No. 32" is available online at www.gold.org.

- by Julia M. Duncan