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Asia Gold-Dwindling demand pushes Chinese discounts to record high

* China discounts widen to $75-$100/oz

* Indian market clings on to small premium

* Demand for gold and silver picks up in Singapore

BENGALURU/MUMBAI, Aug 14 (Reuters) - Chinese discounts for physical gold scaled yet another record peak versus global spot rates this week as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to choke retail appetite, with even a price dip failing to lure consumers in India.

Gold has been sold at discounts in China, usually the world’s top bullion consumer, since February.

Discounts widened to between $75 and $100 an ounce over the global benchmark, up from last week’s $70-$60.

“Even with a price dip, there’s hardly any consumer demand,” said Peter Fung, head of dealing at Wing Fung Precious Metals.

Benchmark prices are now around $1,948 an ounce, having retreated from the record high of $2,072.50 on Aug. 7.

While jewellery fabricators did buy more ahead of an Aug. 25 festival, selling was stronger, said Samson Li, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Refinitiv GFMS.

Hong Kong dealers were operating between a discount of $0.60 an ounce up to a premium of $1.50.

India’s gold futures eased to about 52,400 rupees per 10 grams on Friday, from a record 56,191 rupees last week.

“Jewellery demand was subdued for weeks. Now even investment demand has fallen due to price volatility,” said Ashok Jain, proprietor of Mumbai-based gold wholesaler Chenaji Narsinghji.

Premiums eased to about $2 an ounce over official domestic prices, which incorporates import and sales levies, from $4 last week.

“Buyers are more cautious now and factor in a possible drop as well,” said one Mumbai-based dealer with a bullion-importing private bank.

Bangladesh cut domestic gold rates to 73,716 taka ($871.04) per Bhori (11.664 grams) from a record 77,215 taka ($912.38) last week amid weak demand.

In Singapore, however, consumers used price dips to buy gold and silver.

“The run-up in prices for both metals has generated much interest with retail investors,” said Vincent Tie, sales manager at dealer Silver Bullion.

Premiums of $1-$1.50 an ounce were charged in Singapore. (Reporting by Brijesh Patel and Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru and Rajendra Jadhav in Mumbai Additional reporting by K. Sathya Narayanan and Ruma Paul in Dhaka Editing by David Goodman)

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