Gold prices in the futures market dropped to an eight-month low of ₹46,772 per 10 grams in line with the weakening trend in global markets.
The yellow metal for delivery in April on the MCX opened on a weak note at ₹46,800 and dipped to a low of ₹46,459 per 10 grams but recovered to close at ₹46,899 on Wednesday.
Similarly, silver for March delivery opened at ₹69,507/kg and touched a low of ₹68,560 and recovered to close at ₹69,372.
Gold in the spot market dipped two per cent on Wednesday to ₹46,644/10 gram against ₹47,407 on Tuesday. While the Budget decided to cut the Customs duty on gold to 7.5 per cent from 12.5 per cent in the Budget but levied additional taxes to take the overall levy to about 10.75 per cent. Following this, gold prices have fallen four per cent from ₹48,745/10 gram logged on February 1. Silver is down six per cent from ₹73,043 at the start of February.
The price dip has led to a pick up in demand. Suvankar Sen, CEO, Senco Gold and Diamonds, said gold jewellery sales have picked up since the October festival season on wedding demand.
“We are 70-80 per cent closer to last year’s demand and expect it to bounce back to pre-Covid levels in the March quarter. The changes made in the gold monetisation scheme will help the industry,” he added.
Rising $, T-Bill yields sink gold
Gold prices globally slipped to near-two-week lows as soaring US Treasury yields and a firmer dollar dented the bullion’s appeal. In fact, the yellow metal has been on a free fall since last four days.
Tapan Patel, Senior Analyst (Commodities), HDFC Securities, said gold prices eased with the rise in US bond yields as the vaccine roll-outboosted economic growth optimism.
Benchmark US Treasury yields jumped to their highest in last one year, while the dollar index rebounded from a three-week low. US President Joe Biden wants Congress to pass the relief Bill in the coming weeks to make a direct payment of $1,400 to most Americans and give families up to $3,600 a year per child besides bolstering unemployment payments.
Higher inflation boosts gold but also lifts Treasury yields, which in turn increases the opportunity cost of holding bullion.