CORRECTED – UPDATE 1-IMF’s gold sales slowed 40 pct in Oct. vs Sept.

(Corrects IMF’s gold sales figures to India and Mauritius in
paragraph 8)

* IMF slowed rate of gold sales by 40 pct in Oct. vs Sept.

* Cumulative on-market sales 148.6 tonnes by October
(Recasts, adds details, background)

NEW YORK/WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (BestGrowthStock) – The International
Monetary Fund has slowed the rate of selling its gold by 40
percent in October from the previous month, as interest among
central banks to own the metal increased as a hedge against
economic uncertainty.

The IMF sold 628,000 ounces (19.5 tonnes) of gold in
October as part of its previously announced open-market bullion
sales plan, an IMF spokesman said on Monday.

October’s gold sales were sharply below the 1.04 million
ounces sold in September, when nearly a third of the sale was
going to Bangladesh.

The IMF said late last year it would sell 403.3 tonnes or
one-eighth of its total gold reserves to boost its lending
resources. The fund said the sale would avoid disruptions to
the gold market.

Many analysts expect world central banks as a group could
become net buyers this year despite IMF’s gold sales, reversing
a trend in the last several decades.

Based on information from the IMF’s Financial Statistics
database, the spokesman said cumulative on-market sales of IMF
gold to the end of October was 4.8 million ounces (148.6
tonnes).

The sales were part of IMF plans announced in February to
begin phased sales of 191.3 tonnes of gold in the open market
this year. [ID:nN17152668]

Gold previously sold directly to central banks were 200
tonnes to India, 2 tonnes to Mauritius, 10 tonnes to Sri Lanka
and 10 tonnes to Bangladesh.

Gold prices hit an all-time high of $1,424.10 early this
month before retreating. The rally was driven in part by
expectations that the Federal Reserve would buy back U.S.
Treasuries to stimulate economic growth.

However, gold’s rally appeared to stall despite concerns
about the fiscal health of euro zone economies after a bailout
on debt-stricken Ireland and rising tensions on the Korean
peninsula.

On Monday, spot gold (XAU=: ) traded at around $1,365 an
ounce. Still, the metal has rallied more than five-fold from
about $250 an ounce back in 2001.
(Reporting by Frank Tang and Lesley Wroughton; Editing by
Alden Bentley)

CORRECTED – UPDATE 1-IMF’s gold sales slowed 40 pct in Oct. vs Sept.