Gold prices rose on Monday as the dollar eased, but gains are expected to be muted ahead of inflation data from the United States later this week that could mean U.S. interest rates rise faster than expected.
Spot gold was up 0.6 percent at $1,324.16 an ounce by 3:22 p.m. EST. It has fallen more than 3 percent since hitting a 17-month peak at $1,366.07 in January. U.S. gold futures settled up 0.81 percent at $1,326.30.
Worries about inflation in the United States surfaced after data this month showed jobs growth surged and wages rose, bolstering expectations that the U.S. labor market would hit full employment this year.
U.S. inflation data for January is due on Wednesday and the U.S. Federal Reserve next meets on March 20-21. "The story is and will be about U.S. monetary policy and dollar direction," Julius Baer analyst Carsten Menke said. "U.S. growth is more solid, wages are rising and the worry is the Fed will be forced into more rate hikes than currently expected."