Gold firmed in early European trade on Monday, trading within striking distance of a record high achieved last week on the back of persistent worries about the strength of global economic recovery.

The momentum is still there, said Ole Hansen, senior manager at Saxo Bank. If we stay above $1,250 an ounce this morning and consolidate, it may want to try moving up to $1,270 an ounce,

We've seen another increase in the net long positions from the CFTC data from Friday, which is in line with continued flow into the ETFs, he said.

Bullion also saw support from comments from the head of the CIA that Iran may have enough fissile material to make two atomic weapons, and could build the first in two years.

Gold could rise further to surpass the June 21 record at $1,264.90 per ounce to touch $1,270, as bullish momentum is strong, according to Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao.

(Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk, Editing by Keiron Henderson)