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Gold prices in India this week recorded the biggest discount in seven months as a rebound in prices curtailed retail demand, while lower premiums in other Asian centres failed to lure customers amid the seasonal slowdown.
"In the local market, prices have risen due to the GST (Goods and Services Tax) and a rally in overseas prices. Consumers are not comfortable with the price rise," said Mukesh Kothari, director at bullion dealer RiddiSiddhi Bullions in Mumbai.
"Usually demand remains weak in July. This year, the price rise has added further pressure," Kothari said.
India's gold imports could fall below 35 tonnes in July, consultancy GFMS said.
In top consumer China, premiums ranged from $5 to $10 an ounce. Premiums were slightly below $10 last week.
The international spot gold benchmark was trading near six-week highs hit on Thursday as the dollar plummeted after the US Federal Reserve indicated it would keep to a slow path of monetary tightening.
In Hong Kong, premiums were between 50 to 70 cents, compared with the 60 cents to $1 range in the previous week.
"Demand is not expected to come back in substantial levels until a couple of weeks into August," said Dick Poon, general manager at Heraeus Precious Metals in Hong Kong.
Physical demand dipped in Singapore as well with premiums ranging between 70 cents and a dollar as against the 75 cents to $1.10 level last week,
"Demand in Singapore has been subdued, but scrap flows and disinvestment of bars from across the region have boosted inflows," said Cameron Alexander, an analyst with Thomson Reuters-owned metals consultancy GFMS.
Meanwhile, in Japan, premiums were unchanged at 25 cents per ounce over the benchmark prices.
"With the summer holidays coming up, the slowdown in physical demand in Japan is more due to seasonal factors than because of rallying prices," said a Tokyo-based trader.