China’s gold imports from Hong Kong, a proxy for the country’s overall overseas buying, jumped to a record high in October, the Financial Times reported. Mainland China imported 85.7 metric tons of gold via Hong Kong in October, up 50% month-on-month and more than 40 times the amount imported in October 2010. This is the fourth consecutive month that the gold flows have broken previous records, according to Hong Kong government data. “It is a big but credible number as the price arbitrage between London and Shanghai was definitely favorable for Chinese imports during late September and throughout October,” said Tom Kendall, precious metals analyst at Credit Suisse. He predicted that China’s total gold imports will be 470-490 metric tons for 2011, up from 245 metric tons last year, while some traders believe it could hit 500 metric tons. Chinese gold jewellery and gold bar investments have surged this year as they are popularly seen as a hedge against inflation.