UBS (UBSN.VX) lifted its forecast average gold prices in 2009 to $1,000 an ounce from a previous price view of $700, citing expected strong safe-haven demand.

The Swiss bank said it expected investment demand for the precious metal to double in 2009 compared to 2007.

It said gold had held its ground early in the year despite its usual drivers -- the dollar, oil prices and inflation -- all moving against it.

Normally we would have expected this set of circumstances to trigger steep declines in the gold price, but the metal has remained firm in dollar terms and strong in some of the other major currencies, it said.

(Reporting by Jan Harvey; +44 207 542 7744; Reuters Messaging:

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