Physical gold demand picked up pace in major Asian hubs this week, with bullion being sold at a premium for the first time in more than three months in India, while China saw improved appetite for jewellery. Gold futures in the country fell to Rs. 31,777 per 10 grams on Thursday, the lowest level since January 9. The price correction is giving jewellers an opportunity to replenish inventory at lower levels.
In India, the world's second biggest consumer of the metal after China, dealers were charging a premium of up to $1 an ounce over official domestic prices this week, up from last week's discount of up to $2. The domestic price includes a 10 per cent import tax.
"Right now, demand is good. The price correction is giving jewellers an opportunity to replenish inventory at lower levels," said Mukesh Kothari, director at Mumbai bullion dealer RiddiSiddhi Bullions.
Gold futures in the country fell to Rs. 31,777 per 10 grams on Thursday, the lowest level since January 9.
Jewellers have been making healthy purchases as retail demand for weddings is expected to improve if prices remain at the current level, said a Mumbai-based dealer with a bullion importing bank.
The yellow metal is considered an essential part of weddings in India.
The gold market in China also saw increased demand, pushing premiums higher to $9-$13 over the global benchmark from the previous week's $8-$11.