MUMBAI :  Silver traders in India are a worried lot and may face hurdles in imports, with benchmark silver prices set to go in three months. From Aug 14, the London Silver Fixing Co Ltd will stop the practice of fixing silver prices.

“The biggest issue will be that there won’t be any benchmark price to look upon. Transparent fair price is a must for the market to sustain and LBMA (London Bullion Market Association) will have to choose other alternatives for fixing Silver market prices,” said Prithviraj Kothari, director, RiddiSiddhi Bullions Ltd.

RiddiSiddhi is one of few Indian companies that is a London Bullion Market Association good delivery member. “With effect from the close of business on 14 August 2014, the company will cease to administer a silver fixing, and a daily silver fixing price will no longer be published by the company,” the London Silver Fixing Co Ltd said late on Tuesday.

Kothari said the lack of a benchmark may lead to Indian traders paying higher price for the metal. He said he and other traders are in talks with the London bullion body to find a solution for benchmark silver prices. The London Bullion Market Association has expressed willingness to assist with discussions among market participants on whether there is a need to develop an alternative to the London silver fixing.

India is a major consumer of silver. In 2013, the country is estimated to have imported a record 5,819 tn of the metal, three times more than it had in the previous year, and 15% higher than the

previous record in 2008, a report by Thomson Reuters GFMS said.         -Cogencis

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