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MUMBAI (Reuters) - Gold importers in India, the world's biggest buyer of the yellow metal, slowed purchases in the peak festival season as prices steadied near their highest level in more than two weeks.
At 2:53 p.m., the most-active gold for December delivery on the Multi Commodity Exchange was 0.08 percent higher at 31,298 rupees per 10 grams, after hitting a high of 31,393 rupees, nearing a level last seen on October 19.
"Demand has slowed since yesterday afternoon," said Haresh Acharya, head of bullion desk at Parker Bullion, a wholesaler in Ahmedabad, adding "demand is good this year, but not better than last year."
India is in the middle of the festival season, which will peak with Dhanteras and Diwali next week. Weddings will also continue till December.
The country stared at up to 45 percent fall in imports in 2012, though shipments could witness a slight pick-up in the festive December quarter.
Silver futures also traded flat, following the yellow metal.
Silver for December delivery on the MCX was 0.13 percent lower at 59,834 rupees per kg.
Reporting by Siddesh Mayenkar; Editing by Sunil Nair