VietNamNet Bridge – Experts say some bankers have “swept the board” thanks to
a new policy laid down by the State Bank of Vietnam.
The State Bank of Vietnam stated that it begins organizing gold tenders from
March 1, 2013. Prior to that, the domestic gold price had dropped significantly
to the VND42 million per tael threshold. A lot of banks, which got the
permission to import gold temporarily for re-export later, have earned big
An expert estimates that the profit the banks could pocket may be up to VND1.2
trillion. Explaining this, he said the exported gold was non-SJC gold (SJC is
now the Vietnamese national gold brand).
After that, the bankers imported material gold and have the imports processed at
the Saigon Jewelry Company (SJC). While the banks just have to pay VND50,000 per
tael in fee, they can sell the gold later to enjoy the price gap of VND1.5-2
million per tael.
Meanwhile, according to the State bank, 10 commercial banks still have not
completed and finalization and closing of gold accounts yet due to the liquidity
The profuse gold supply plus the domestic price decreases have both brought the
gold opportunities for banks to buy gold in so as to finalize and close the gold
accounts before the deadline of June 30.
A banker said at a conference of the banking system recently that credit
institutions have reported the sharp fall of 96 percent in the business
efficiency in comparison with the last year.
This has been explained by the fact that some banks have taken loss from the
gold mobilization and lending. The Q4 finance report of ACB showed that the bank
incurred the loss of VND1,863 billion in 2012 from the gold and foreign currency
Prior to that, some banks also complained about the loss from gold trading in
2012. The banks took big losses because they bought gold at high prices to
ensure their liquidity (at the time when the market vibrated on the arrest of
Nguyen Duc Kien, a big banker, the gold price hit the VND47 million per tael
threshold). Meanwhile, the gold price has later decreased sharply.
Some make fat profits, others take big losses
The State Bank of Vietnam has vowed to narrow the gap between the domestic and
the international gold prices.
Sources have said that in order to obtain that goal, the State Bank of Vietnam
would take some measures to help increase the supply.
The information has had immediate impacts on the gold market. Since people
believe that the State Bank would put more gold into the market to improve the
supply, the gold prices have been decreasing rapidly, thus making gold holders
Hung Thang, a gold investor in Le Chan district in Hai Phong complained on
February 28 that he has lost VND2 billion.
“I wonder if I should sell gold now or keep gold. I am afraid that the prices
would go down further because the State Bank is determined to force the prices
down. Meanwhile, if I sell gold now, I would incur the loss of VND2 billion,”
The investor revealed that on pre-Tet days, he sometimes could earn up to tens
of millions of dong in profit from trading gold. At that time, the gold price
fluctuated heavily, which brought many opportunities to investors to make money.
Anh in district 3, HCM City, also complained that she has lost VND4 million for
every tael of gold she has, because the domestic gold price has been decreasing
continuously in recent days.