Gold and silver prices fell today in Indian markets, tracking a decline in global rates. On MCX, gold futures rates fell 0.3% to 39,780 per 10 gram, extending losses to the second day. Silver prices on MCX fell 0.34% to 45,987 per kg. In global markets, spot gold rates fell 0.4% to $1,551.13 per ounce. Most Asian markets were higher today, denting the safe-haven appeal of gold, even though investors remained worried about threat of the new flu-like coronavirus in China. Silver fell 0.2% to $17.73 per ounce.

"Investors are assessing the risk of a global epidemic from a coronavirus outbreak from China that could have an impact on economic growth. Gold can dip towards 39,600 while taking resistance near 40,000 while silver can test 45,800 while taking resistance near 46,500," SMC Global said in a note.

China will start celebrating the Lunar New Year, a key gold buying occasion in the region, from this weekend.

"Gold prices may get a further direction from the World Economic Forum in Davos and the European Central Bank’s policy meeting this week. Physical demand is likely to pick up over the lunar year holiday starting later this week. It will be supportive of gold prices. Demand generally picks up in China and Singapore during the lunar New Year celebrations," said Abhishek Bansal, chairman of Abans Group of Companies.

Kotak Securities expects gold to witness choppy trade in near term as market players assess the latest health issues emerging in China. However, the general bias may be on the downside on subdued demand expectations, it added.

"Gold was also pressurized by reports of lower Chinese imports last year. As per China Gold Association data, China consumed 1,002.8 tonnes of gold in 2019, down 12.9% year-on-year," Kotak Securities added.

Investors also moved to the sidelines amid mixed trade in gold. Gold holdings with SPDR ETF were unchanged at 898.8 tonnes, highest since November 11, 2019, according to Kotak Securities. (With Reuters Inputs)

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