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India gold demand weak as strike hits retail buying
MUMBAI, Sept 20 |
MUMBAI, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Gold demand in India was sluggish on Thursday as many jewellery shops were closed due to a nationwide strike, although the price eased in the world's biggest consuming market following a drop overseas.
* Schools, shops and government offices were shut in some Indian states as protesters blocked road and rail traffic as part of a one-day nationwide strike against sweeping economic reforms announced by the government last week.
* The most-traded gold contract for October delivery was down 0.52 percent at 31,850 rupees per 10 grams by 4:17 p.m. It had hit a record high of 32,421 rupees last week.
* "Demand was weak. Jewellery shops were closed due to the strike. Some jewellers were buying from banks, but by and large buying was dull," said a Mumbai-based dealer with a state-run bank.
"If prices fall by another 700 or 800 rupees (per 10 grams), we can see significant improvement in buying."
* Spot gold prices in the world market fell on Thursday as a stronger dollar and weaker oil and stock markets prompted some investors to cash in gains after the previous day's 6-1/2 month high.
* The rupee, which determines the landed cost of the dollar-quoted yellow metal, eased on Thursday, restricting the downside in gold prices.
* India celebrates the Ganesh festival this week, which will be followed by Dussehra in October and Diwali in November. Buying gold during festivals is considered auspicious.
* Following were the prices in rupees at 4:15 p.m., quoted by HDFC Bank in the spot market :
Gold .999/10 grams 31,870 31,989
Silver .999/kg 64,651 64,586
At 4:17 p.m., following were the prices in rupees on the Multi Commodity Exchange of India Ltd <0#MAU:>:
Contract Current price Net change
Oct gold 31,850 -168
Dec silver 63,923 -557 (Reporting by Rajendra Jadhav; Editing by Sunil Nair)
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