Even as stocks were deluged with sell orders, the one class of securities that saw buying was the listed gold exchange traded funds (ETFs). While Sensex and Nifty lost 3 per cent, gold ETFs gained over 3.5 per cent in value.
GoldBEES, Benchmark Mutual Fund’s gold ETF touched its life time high of Rs 1,504 on the National Stock Exchange and closed at Rs 1,503 per unit. Relgold (Reliance’s Gold ETF) and Goldshare (UTI MF) too touched new highs at Rs 1,466 and Rs 1,498.50 respectively.
Volumes too were higher on all gold ETF counters. The number of units traded (Gold Benchmark ETF, Kotak Gold ETF, Quantum Gold, UTI Gold ETF and Reliance Gold ETF) were at twice the average volumes recorded last week. Volume in GoldBEES, the most popular of the lot, surged to 52,280 units when the average volume last week was just 24,000 units.
Higher buying interest in gold ETFs came on the back of spot prices of domestic gold going above Rs15,000/gm. International prices hover at $961 per ounce (a 7-month high). Higher global gold prices, combined with the rupee traversing below the 49 mark to a dollar, helped the surge in domestic gold prices and ETFs.
Gold ETFs have delivered a handsome 25 per cent return in one year whereas in the same period, diversified equity funds as a category have seen a value erosion of 49 per cent. Had one invested in Gold ETFs just a month back, they would have got a 14-per cent return; an investment in equity funds during the same period, however, would have delivered a negative return of 1 per cent.