Gold eased from four-month highs on Monday as investors cashed in some of last week’s hefty gains, though prices were still supported by wider market volatility that boosted the metal’s appeal as a haven from risk.
A market rout after Switzerland unexpectedly abandoned a cap on the franc last week triggered strong bids for gold, often seen as an alternative to risky assets, sending prices to their highest since September at $1,281.50.
Spot gold was down 0.4 percent at $1,274.61 an ounce at 1652 GMT, while U.S. gold futures for February delivery were down $1.50 an ounce at $1,275.40. Spot gold is up nearly 8 percent this year.
Holdings of the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Trust, climbed 13.7 tonnes to 730.89 tonnes on Friday, its biggest one-day inflow in nearly 3-1/2 years.
Speculators raised their net long position in gold for the third straight week, ending Jan. 13, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on Friday.
Silver was down 0.3 percent at $17.68 an ounce, while platinum was flat at $1,263.25 and palladium up 0.4 percent at $754.22.
Palladium bucked the trend for precious metals last week, falling more than 6 percent.