Gold prices soar to Rs15,700 per 10 gm

Gold prices soared to a record Rs15,700 per 10 gm in Mumbai today even as the prices of the yellow metal hovered near $1,000 an ounce in the international market.

Standard gold shot up Rs455 to hit a seven-month high of Rs15,700 per 10 gm on the local market while pure gold surged to Rs15,320 per 10 gm, consolidating the biggest two-day gain since March.

The fund flows to gold was also aided by rising inflation, which prompted investors to retreat from shares and other risk assets and look for safer alternatives.

Gold in the US was up almost 5 per cent as the December contract surged $19.20 to a six-month high of $997.70 an ounce.

In London, gold prices perked near $1,000, missing the level by about 1 per cent. Gold reached $997.80 on Thursday, the highest price since 23 February.

The price spike in the local market has also been aided by a 60 per cent fall in imports of gold into the country. The Indian Bullion Market Association (IBMA) expects the country's gold imports in 2009 to decline to 250 tonnes from 675 tonnes in the previous year.