Gold and silver prices in India edged higher today after a sharp fall in the previous session. On MCX, gold futures rose 0.4% to 51,532 per 10 gram while silver futures gained 0.6% to 68,350 per kg. In the previous session, gold futures had tumbled 1% or about 500 while silver had slumped 1.5% or 1050 per kg. Gold has traded in a range after hitting record highs of 56200 last month.

In global markets, gold prices were flat today as optimism around a potential covid vaccine lifted appetite for riskier assets. Spot gold was flat at $1,941.11 per ounce. Among other precious metals, silver fell 0.3% to $26.68 per ounce while platinum gained 0.4% to $928.61.

Gold investors also remained cautious ahead of US Federal Reserve's monetary policy decision due later this week.

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Asian equity markets were mostly higher while US futures pointed higher as hopes of a coronavirus vaccine were rekindled after AstraZeneca resumed its phase-3 trial. Also, Pfizer Inc. Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourla said it’s “likely" the US will deploy a Covid-19 vaccine to the public before year-end.

The dollar index slipped against against its rivals. A weaker greenback makes gold cheaper for holders of other currencies.

Gold traders will focus on U.S. central bank's two-day policy meeting scheduled on September 15-16.

From the start of this year, gold prices in India are up about 30% tracking a global rally amid unprecedented stimulus unleashed by central banks and governments across the world.

Amid directionless trade in gold, investors moved into sidelines. SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its holdings fell 0.4% to 1,248.00 tonnes on Friday.

Back in India, gold dealers in India offered discounts for a fourth straight week as demand took a further hit due to the start the 'Shradh' period, which is considered inauspicious to buy gold and other assets.

Gold prices in India, the second-biggest buyer after China, include 12.5% import duty and 3% GST.