MUMBAI (Reuters) - Indian gold importers continued to stock up for the wedding season, taking advantage as prices fell, weighed by a stronger rupee, and bracing for a year-end shut down by refiners for account closing.
The wedding season is underway in India and will continue until early January. Gold is an essential gift item at weddings in India, the world's largest buyer of the metal.
The actively traded gold for February delivery on the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) was 0.19 percent lower at 31,167 rupees per 10 grams at 2:36 p.m., after hitting 31,155 rupees, the lowest since December 7, weighed by a stronger rupee.
The rupee, which recovered from early losses, plays an important role in determining the landed cost of the dollar-denominated yellow metal.
"Sales are going on due to the marriage season. People feel this is a good buying opportunity as prices could jump another 1,000 rupees," said Harshad Ajmera, proprietor of JJ Gold House.
India's gold market will have to survive on despatched shipments as supply will come to a halt in the last fortnight of the calendar year for account books closure.
In the international market, gold traded a tad lower as investors cautiously watched U.S. talks to avoid a looming fiscal calamity that have so far made little progress.
March silver also traded near its lowest level in more than a week, before trading 0.33 percent higher at 61,710 rupees per kg.
Reporting by Siddesh Mayenkar; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi