Gold futures almost steady on dollar

Gold futures almost steady on dollar

Mumbai: India’s gold trade remained quiet on Wednesday as most banks, the primary sellers of the yellow metal, were shut for half-year book closing, dealers said.

“Traders are not keen on booking (gold) today as the rupee market is closed," said a dealer with a private bank.

Indian currency markets are closed on Wednesday for the half-year book closing for fiscal 2009/10. Trading resumes on Thursday.

Gold is a dollar-denominated asset.

Dealers say there has been a pick-up in physical off take this month, but down from last year, as traders continued to replenish stocks for festivals.

“There is a little bit of demand because of festivals, but it is still 70% lower than last year," said a senior executive of a large foreign bank, which supplies bullion to India.

India, the world’s largest consumer, is in the midst of the festival and wedding season, with Diwali and Dhanteras due next month, which is expected to revive sagging gold sales.

India’s gold imports in September were provisionally around 35-40 tonnes, up from August but down by more than a quarter from 54 tonnes a year ago, the head of the Bombay Bullion Association (BBA) said on Wednesday.