MTECHTIPS-Gold prices traded slightly higher on Monday amid thin trade with U.S. and Canadian financial markets closed for their respective Labor Day holidays. At 10:19 AM ET (14:19 GMT), gold futures for December delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange gained $2.30, or 0.19%, to $1,206.70 a troy ounce. Gold prices registered their fifth straight monthly decline in August and are down 7.6% year-to-date, pressured lower by the stronger dollar and rising interest rates. Investors have also shunned the precious metal despite an escalation in global trade tensions, indicating that gold may be losing its safe haven status as traders opt to invest in the dollar. Last week the U.S. reached a deal with Mexico aimed at overhauling the North American Free Trade Agreement, but talks with Canada stalled hours before a Friday deadline. Separately, the Trump administration is preparing to slap a fresh round of tariffs on Chinese imports in a move that could come as early as this week, escalating a trade row with Beijing.