Gold hits 4-year high of Rs58,500 per tola

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Mar 27, 2018-

Gold hit a four-year high of Rs58,500 per tola (11.664 gm) on Monday as the threat of a trade war between the US and China drove investors to seek refuge in safe assets.

The last time the yellow metal rose to this height was on August 22, 2013. According to the Federation of Gold and Silver Dealers’ Association (Fenegosida), the price of gold rose by Rs1,000 per tola over the past week.

Fenegosida President Mohan Kumar Sunar said gold prices soared due to a rise in demand in the international market. “The weakening of the US dollar, ongoing trade dispute between the US and China and possibility of a hike in interest rates by the Federal Reserve could have made investors switch to the precious metal as a safe haven for their investments,” Sunar said.

The international media has attributed the rise in gold prices to the threat of a global trade war which pushed equities and the US dollar lower, and spurred demand for assets such as bullion that are broadly seen as safe-haven investments.

As per Reuters, spot gold on Monday edged up 0.3 percent in early trade to hit $1,350.76 per ounce. The price rose 2.6 percent last week, its biggest weekly gain since September 2017.

US President Donald Trump recently announced tariff hikes of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminium. In response, China last week announced a hike in tariffs on a list of US goods including pork, apples and steel pipes. “China is the world’s largest producer of steel and aluminium. Although China may not be a large exporter of metals to the US, its capacity to bring down the global metal market is undisputed,” the Financial Express stated.

Gold hit a record high of more than Rs63,000 per tola on August 28, 2013 before dipping to a low of Rs47,800 on August 4, 2015.

Fenegosida fixes the reference price of gold for the domestic market based on prices in the international market. Sunar said demand for the precious metal had slumped in the local market. “We expect sales to go up in the next two weeks with the start of the wedding season in mid-April.”

As per Fenegosida, Nepal imports 20 kg of gold daily. “During the peak season, demand surges to up to 40 kg daily,” said Sunar. He has been urging the government to raise the import quota to 30 kg daily.

Published: 27-03-2018 08:56

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