New Delhi: Gold prices closed the day at Rs 26,740 per 10 grams on Monday, registering a loss of Rs 600, due to panic selling by stockists, sparked by a steep fall in global bullion markets.

The metal had suffered the steepest single day fall by plunging Rs 1,540 to touch an intra-day low of Rs 25,800 per 10 grams in the opening trade.

Trading sentiments dampened after the gold fell by over USD 225 in Asia in the last two trading sessions, its worst two-day slump since 1983, on speculation that the European governments will struggle to contain the region's debt crisis.

Silver followed suit and shed Rs 500 to Rs 53,500 per kg. The metal has lost Rs 10,500 in last two trading sessions as industrial units refrained from buying during high volatility.

In Singapore, gold tumbled USD 124 to USD 1,532.72 an ounce and silver by 9.70 percent to USD 26.07 an ounce.

Market analysts said retailers' adopted cautious approach and refrained from buying on expectation that the precious metals' prices may fall in the coming days, which further dampened the sentiment.

Back home, gold of 99.9 and 99.5 percent purity moved down by Rs 600 each to Rs 26,740 and Rs 26,600 per 10 grams, respectively. The metal has lost Rs 1,160 in the last three sessions.

Sovereigns held steady at Rs 21,200 per piece of eight grams on restricted buying.

Silver ready closed at Rs 53,500 per kg, down by Rs 500. It had opened lower at Rs 50,800. Silver weekly-based delivery plunged by Rs 2,960 to Rs 50,800 per kg.

Silver coins tumbled by Rs 5,000 to Rs 56,000 for buying and Rs 57,000 for selling of 100 pieces.

(Agencies)