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Palladium jewellery demand up 19.6 per cent in 2008

25 may 2009

Johnson Matthey claimed on 18th May that net demand from the palladium jewellery industry increased by 19.6 per cent to 855,000 oz in 2008.
According to the company's new 'Platinum 2009' report, the majority of the improvement came in China, where demand increased from 500,000 oz to 650,000 oz.
This trend can perhaps be explained by some manufacturers' decision to change to palladium jewellery production in light of the high gold and platinum prices early in the year.
Although manufacturing volumes rose in the first three quarters, producers switched back to the traditional gold and platinum jewellery when prices began to decline.
As a result, Johnson Matthey is predicting further growth in demand in North America and Europe.
In relation to China, the report stated that the capacity for palladium jewellery output has been restrained by the large production of its platinum counterpart in the early stages of 2009.
"If the price of platinum remains close to first-quarter 2009 levels, palladium demand is unlikely to be greater than in 2008 in this market," it noted.
"However, any substantial increase in the platinum price could well translate into additional palladium demand."
Johnson Matthey also explained that the retail outlook for China is unclear as sales outside the major provinces in the north-east and west of the country have been "patchy".

Yekaterina Davydova, Rough&Polished Asian Bureau Editor in Beijing