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Gold Prices In India Soften On Firm Rupee

Olga Robert

On Tuesday, gold prices in India edged lower on rupee's gains. On MCX, gold futures (February 2020) fell by 0.23 percent to Rs 40,490 per 10 grams and silver futures (March 2020) declined 0.30 percent to Rs 46,864/kg.

The Indian rupee was trading at 71.31 against the US dollar against Monday's close of 71.44. The domestic currency strengthened marginally as crude oil prices declined over concerns of fall in demand amid increased travel restrictions in and to China to contain the spread of coronavirus infection.

Due to the high dependence on imports for fuel demand, a fall in oil prices eases pressure on India's current account deficit, strengthening the rupee.

Additionally, gold prices in the international market were little changed as investors await the results of the US Federal Reserve's first meeting of the year scheduled for 28-29 January.

Spot gold remained steady at $1,581.09 an ounce on Tuesday, having surged to $1,586.42 in the previous session.

Analysts feel that while weakness in equity markets amid China virus scare may benefit the bullion, it may not see major gains due to stronger dollar (which is also a safe haven asset) and limited physical market activity.

The Chinese New year holiday usually sees high demand for the precious metal from buyers in China, however, this year, preventive measures taken by the world's second-largest economy has limited purchases.

As coronavirus death toll crosses 100, the world's largest gold consumer has imposed travel restrictions across cities. Wuhan, the Chinese city where the highest number of confirmed cases of infections have been reported, is effectively on lockdown with bus, subway, ferry, train and plane services being suspended.

The country has also extended the Lunar New Year holiday to 2 February to limit the spread of infection from people gathering in public spaces.

"Gold can move higher towards 40,800 while taking support near Rs 40,450 while silver can test Rs 47,300 while taking support near Rs 46,700," said SMC Global.

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