Investment 31 Jul 2017
The new gold monetisation scheme announced on September 9 allows depositors to earn interest on their gold. The scheme will go live soon and if you don't wish to keep your gold locked up in lockers and pay an annual rent to safeguard it, you can opt for this scheme by opening a gold savings account in a designated bank.
Gold held in any form - jewellery, bars or coins can be deposited for tenures ranging from 1 to 15 years.
The gold is melted, its purity ascertained and after this purity certificates are issued.
Previously, the entire process took up to 30 days to issue purity certificates. To simplify the process this time around, the government will enlist as many of the 435 assaying and hallmarking centers which will act as “collection and purity testing centres”.
The gold deposits can either be short-term (1-3 years), medium-term (5-7 years) or long-term (12-15 years) and you will earn interest in gold on your deposits.
You will have the option to break the deposits ahead of maturity, but will have to pay a penalty if you do so, just like regular fixed deposits.
Short-term deposits can be redeemed either in cash (in equivalent rupees of the weight of deposited gold at the prices prevailing at the time of redemption) or in gold (of the same weight of gold as deposited). You will need to decide at the time when you make your first deposit whether you wish to opt for cash or gold payouts on maturity.
Medium-term and long-term deposits can only be redeemed in cash (equivalent to the value of gold deposited at the time of redemption).
Interests for short-term deposits will be decided and announced by the respective banks.
Interests for medium-term and longer-term deposits will be decided by the government after discussions with the Reserve Bank of India.
Big differences in 2015 to make the scheme simpler
This is the government's sixth gold monetisation scheme, the first having been rolled out in 1962 by then finance minister Morarji Desai. There are some essential differences in the new scheme.
The minimum gold deposit can be 30 grams. It was 500 grams earlier. This makes sure that the scheme is available to individuals unlike earlier when trusts with large holdings were only targeted.
There is also the flexibility of choosing between a range of tenures from 1-15 years.
Also, like we mentioned earlier, the government plans to involve the assaying and hallmarking centers to issue purity certificates.
Adding sheen will be a higher rate of interest on the deposits too.
This is a phrase used for any yellow-coloured metal that may get mistaken for gold. Many pyrites such as iron pyrite look similar to gold due to their yellow sheen but do not compare to it in terms of value and hence are nick-named as fool's gold.
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