Physical gold dealers struggled to meet surging safe-haven demand this week, especially in Singapore, as the coronavirus outbreak choked global supply chains, while massive discounts were offered in India amidst a lockdown.
In India, trading came to a standstill as the country went into a three-week lockdown to curb the spread of the virus, pushing discounts to their highest since mid-September, at $48 an ounce.
"Physical trade has stalled. There won't be any movement for the next three weeks," said Prithviraj Kothari, managing director of RiddiSiddhi Bullions.
Demand was nil even during the Gudi Padwa festival this week, he added.
Indian gold futures closed at ₹43,643 on Friday per 10 grams on Friday. The domestic price includes a 12.5% import tax and 3% GST.