Gold Rises on Greek Tensions, India Asks for Cut in Import Tax

Gold and silver futures rose for the first time in three sessions as a dispute between Greece’s prime minister and international lenders escalated, boosting demand for the precious metals as a haven. Gold futures for April delivery rose 0.4% to $1,239 an ounce at 10:05 a.m. on the Comex in New York. The price dropped 2.4% in the previous two sessions on gains in the US economy.

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New Prime Minister Alex Tsipras has said Greece, unable to service its debt, would instead seek a bridge loan from its fellow EU member-states than the bailout program currently under way.

“The bailout failed,” Mr Tsipras said on Sunday, in his first major speech to parliament since becoming prime minister. “The new government is not justified in asking for an extension… because it cannot ask for an extension of mistakes.”

Greece’s bonds and stocks fell as Tsipras showed little sign of backing down in the standoff with creditors as he began three days of debates on his government’s policy plans. In January, gold rose 8%, partly on European economic concerns.

Meanwhile, India’s Trade Ministry has asked the nation’s Finance Ministry to reduce the gold import tax to 2% from 10%, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal that cited an unidentified source.

Following two days of increases, the price of Indian silver dropped by 2.8% to end at INR 38,311 ($620.54) per kilogram on Friday, February 6. After improving for two days, the price of Japanese silver declined 1.4% to JPY 649.00 ($5.52) per 10 grams. At CNY 3,615 ($578.12) per kilogram, Chinese silver fell 0.8% last Friday. Following a two-day rise, the price of US silver flattened at $17.33.

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Indian gold bullion ended the day at INR 27,495 ($445.35) per 10 grams, after the 0.6% drop last Friday. The price of Chinese gold bullion fell 0.6% to CNY 254.75 ($40.74) per gram. US gold bullion prices saw a 0.3% decline to $1,265 per ounce. The price of Japanese gold bullion declined 0.2% to JPY 4,782 ($40.68) per gram.

Japanese platinum bar prices rose 1.1% to JPY 4,717 ($40.13) per gram. Chinese platinum bar gained 0.4% to finish at CNY 268.00 ($42.86) per gram. The price of US platinum bar ended a two-day climb, settling at $1,240 per ounce.

Chinese palladium bar finished the day down 0.6% to CNY 178.00 ($28.47) per gram. US palladium bar closed 0.1% lower at $789.05 per ounce. The price of Japanese palladium bar remained essentially flat at JPY 2,944 ($25.05) per gram.

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