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Gold Demand Jumps in Japan as Sub-Zero Rates Spur Call for Haven

  • Sales increase 35% in first quarter after Bank of Japan move
  • Negative rates seen boosting central bank, investor demand

Gold sales surged in Japan through March after the country’s move to set negative interest rates sent investors scurrying for a shelter, a further sign that global central bank policy of keeping borrowing costs low or below zero is stoking demand for bullion.

Bar sales climbed by 35 percent to 8,192 kilograms in the three months ended March 31 from a year earlier, Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo K.K., the country’s biggest bullion retailer, said in a statement Thursday.