Platinum Demand Drops 26% in 2001


May 14, 2002

U.S. Platinum Demand Drops 26% in 2001

In the face of a tough economy and rising platinum prices, demand for platinum suffered its first setback in 10 years in the U.S., falling 100,000 ounces, reported Johnson Matthey in its annual Platinum 2002 review.

The platinum supplier said the problem stemmed from the holiday season of 2000, when sales were lower than expected, causing jewelers to be overstocked heading into 2001. Fewer purchases by retailers during 2001 resulted.

Holiday 2001 sales, however, were better than expected, reports Johnson Matthey, and demand for platinum has been up during the first quarter of 2002.

Record platinum jewelry gains in China, plus healthy markets in England and Switzerland meant overall world declines in platinum jewelry sales were only 10%. China's year on year sales were up a staggering 18%.



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