* Analysts say dollar weakness to continue
* Speculators cut net gold longs in the week to Feb. 13
* GRAPHIC-2018 asset returns: http://tmsnrt.rs/2jvdmXl
(Updates prices, adds comment) LONDON, Feb 19 (Reuters) - Gold prices were down slightly on Monday as the dollar clawed back some recent losses and stocks rose, but worries about U.S. inflation kept buyers in the metal.
Spot gold was down 0.11 percent at $1,346.31 an ounce
at 1:30 p.m. EST (1830 GMT). U.S. April gold futures slipped 0.54 percent to $1,348.90 per ounce. Gold rose 2.4 percent last week in its biggest weekly gain in more than five months. "Gold is doing relatively well in a risk-on environment. The safe-haven appeal (in gold) is a bit in question but it has a lot to do with movements in the dollar which has recovered somewhat," said ABN AMRO commodity strategist Georgette Boele.
The dollar index , which measures the currency against
a basket of currencies, was up 0.1 percent after shedding 1.4 percent last week. Investors piled into gold last week on concerns that U.S. inflation could heat up. In wider markets, world stocks extended their recovery on Monday while oil inched higher. "The 10-year bonds across the globe are up, so the price of gold came off a bit on that," said Walter Pehowich, executive vice president of investment services at Dillon Gage Metals. The minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's last policy meeting, held on Jan. 30-31 amid the equities tumble, are due on Wednesday. Besides the outlook on rates, investors will be keen to see what the Fed made of the market gyrations. On Friday, a 37-page indictment filed by U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller charged 13 Russians and three Russian companies with meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Russia dismissed the allegations as absurd. Gold is often used as a hedge against geopolitical uncertainty. Hedge funds and money managers cut their net long positions in COMEX gold in the week to Feb. 13, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday. Trading is expected to be slower than usual this week due Lunar New Year celebrations in China. Monday is also a market holiday in the United States for Presidents Day.
SPDR Gold Trust , the world's largest gold-backed
exchange-traded fund, said its holdings rose 0.39 percent to 824.54 tonnes on Friday.
Among other precious metals, silver was down slightly
at $16.657 an ounce after falling 1.2 percent in the previous session.
Platinum was up 0.25 percent at $1,005.00 an ounce,
after earlier touching its highest in over three weeks at $1,013.50.
Palladium fell 1.1 percent to $1,033.00 an ounce
after touching its highest in about two weeks earlier in the session. "Palladium has been expensive and overvalued for a long time now so I could see it go lower from here," ABN AMRO's Boelle said.
(Additional reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru and Julie Gordon in Vancouver; Editing by Louise Heavens, Jane Merriman and Frances Kerry)