Gold Demand: A Different View


November 7, 2019

Pat Heller


Most market observers are aware that China is the world’s largest gold-consuming nation.  However, a different way of judging the relative strength of gold demand in a country is to express it as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Such a ranking will tend to highly rank nations with lower levels of wealth or wealthy countries with low populations.  According to a recent World Bank report, here are the top 10 as a percentage of GDP.  Alongside them is the percentage of household spending devoted to purchasing gold:


Nation             % Of GDP Spent On Gold     % Of Household Spending Spent On Gold


India                                        1.14%                                                  1.91%

Vietnam                                   0.99%                                                  1.47%

Thailand                                  0.65%                                                  1.33%

Hong Kong                             0.59%                                                  0.86%

Pakistan                                   0.52%                                                  0.64%

Kuwait                                     0.49%                                                  1.33%

Egypt                                       0.44%                                                  0.52%

Sri Lanka                                 0.44%                                                  0.63%

United Arab Emirates             0.41%                                                  1.07%

Turkey                                     0.39%                                                  0.69%


In comparison, because of the substantially higher per capita GDP in China than in India, that nation only spends 0.30 percent of GDP on gold.  Still, even that is far higher than the U.S. at a small 0.03 percent of GDP.

The global averages are 0.16 percent of GDP spent on gold and 0.29 percent of household spending is devoted to acquiring gold.

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