Legend has it that the God of Wealth returns to heaven on the tenth day of the first lunar month each year. Vietnamese people consider this God of Wealth Day, so they have a tradition of buying some gold for good luck and prosperity throughout the year.
To meet the predicted rise in gold demand, many gold companies across the country have prepared various kinds of gold products in different sizes and shapes, including those with Phuc (Happiness), Loc (Prosperity) and Tai (Wealth) letters and figurines of the 12 zodiac animals.
As it is currently the Year of the Rooster in the lunar calendar, the rooster is also widely featured on a variety of gold products.
Tran Thi Cuc, deputy general director of Phu Nhuan Jewelry Joint Stock Company (PNJ), said customers usually prefer gold bar of moderate weight or rings weighing 0.5 – 2 tenth of tael. A tael is the most common weight measure of gold in Vietnam, which equals 37.5 grammes.
PNJ will supply nearly 150,000 gold products on this special occasion, an increase of 50,000 products from last year, she said.
In addition, PNJ has also launched to the market 2,000 figurines of roosters and hens lay golden eggs, which are all made from 24k gold and weigh two taels each, and 5,000 products of gold-plated roosters with prices ranging from VND15-17 million (US$663-752) each.
Other major players, including DOJI, Sacombank Jewelry Company (SBJ), Sai Gon Jewelry Company Limited (SJC), Bao Tin Minh Chau and Phu Quy, said they had carefully prepared to meet rising demand this year.
DOJI said with a preparation of up to 200,000 products since the middle of last year, the company will meet demand for buying gold on God of Wealth Day from consumers across the country.
SBJ, besides selling traditional gold products such as Than tai (God of Wealth) gold bullion, will introduce many new gold products on this occasion, including gold-plated roosters, gold coins inscribed with Maitreya, or Phuc, Loc, Tho (Longevity) letters.
SJC also launched a new lucky gold series for this year, including God of Wealth figurines, golden roosters, and coins of 12 zodiac animals.
According to gold traders, demand for gold is expected to be higher than previous years on God of Wealth Day.
PNJ, DOJI and other gold companies said their gold shops will add staff and open earlier and close later than usual on God of Wealth Day to create the most convenience for customers.
To avoid a shortage of products that plauged previous years, they made plans for production and distribution many months ago and also launched their new products to the market since the middle of last month.
Many people bought gold since gold shops resumed operation after Tet break as they bet that prices would rise if they bought on the right day.
Thanh An, a bakery owner in HCM City’s Binh Thạnh District, who just bought a gold sheet stamped with the “Loc” (Prosperity) letter at a gold shop in Binh Thạnh District, said “I had to wait for hours to be able to buy gold last year, so I decided to buy earlier this year.”
Purchasing the precious metal at the beginning of the year, especially on God of Wealth Day, brings good luck for people doing business, she said.
But many others think that the purchase must be done on the right day.
Tran Thi My Phuong, in Thu Duc District, said “The God of Wealth will only bring good fortune to you if you buy gold on the tenth day of the lunar calendar.”
“Even though I have to hustle in the crowd, I am willing to do so in exchange for luck the entire year,” she said.
SJC on February 4 morning quoted gold at VND37.2 million and VND37.6 million a tael for buying and selling, respectively, in HCM City, a slight fall from the previous day.