While April 21st may just be a regular Tuesday for most of us, in India it’s a very special holiday. Akshaya Tritiya is an annual event celebrated when the moon and the sun are at equal brightness. Both Hindus and Jains observe the holiday. But what does this have to do with gold sales?
In the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit, the word akshaya roughly means “that which never diminishes,” while the Sanskrit word tritiya basically means “third.” Akshaya Tritiya falls on the third day of the Indian month Vaisakha, which usually begins in mid-April. Because the day is believed to be “never diminishing,” people celebrate the holiday by starting new businesses, making investments, getting married, and buying gifts like gold.
Aside from being a day considered lucky for investors, Akshaya Tritiya is also a day for giving. Gold and diamond jewelry is a common gift for the holiday. Gold coins featuring the face of a Hindu god or goddess are also commonly purchased. The goddess Lakshmi is celebrated on this holiday, so another common gift is “Lakshmi-inscribed” gold coins. Much like for Christmas, or Valentine’s Day in the U.S., Indian jewelry stores offer special deals for Akshaya Tritiya to attract customers. And it’s not just jewelers who are getting in on the action.
Akshaya Tritiya is a common wedding day in India because couples who get married on the holiday are said to be blessed with good fortune for eternity. And Indian weddings are a golden occasion. Gold jewelry is already a very common gift at Indian weddings, so weddings that fall on Akshaya Tritiya typically have even more gold.
While many of us may not be familiar with Akshaya Tritiya, in India, it’s a huge deal. With India’s surging population and the high demand for gold on Akshaya Tritiya, there is a ripple effect that pushes gold sales up in April.
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