* Gold up 34% so far this year * Silver tops more than 7-year peak * Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus: open tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser (Recasts, adds comments, and updates prices) By Brijesh Patel Aug 6 (Reuters) - Gold prices raced towards a record high on Thursday as dismal U.S. jobs data hammered the dollar and intensified worries about a recovery in the pandemic-ravaged global economy. Spot gold was just a hair's breadth away from its all-time high touched in the previous session, up 0.6% at $2,051.44 per ounce by 0645 GMT. U.S. gold futures rose 0.8% to $2,064.60. "There are real concerns about whether the global economic recovery will continue with infection cases continuing to rise in the U.S.," said Harshal Barot, research consultant for South Asia at Metals Focus. "Those concerns have now intensified, raising doubts that whatever recovery we had in the last couple of months would not last, leading to safe-haven buying. Broadly, inflation expectations have also started to pick up slightly." Three Federal Reserve policymakers warned the pandemic would continue to hurt the U.S. economy, with local cases topping 4.7 million. The sombre outlook sent the dollar index to a more than two-year low, with data on Wednesday showing U.S. private payrolls growth slowed sharply last month. "The only real cure to claw back some economic dignity is that global interest rates remain low for as far as the eye can see and even redoubled amounts government stimulus," Stephen Innes, chief market strategist at financial services firm AxiCorp, said in a note. Gold has rallied over 34% this year as it's considered an asset that should hold its value while the pandemic and central bank money printing erode the value of others. Falling real yields have also made the non-interest bearing metal an attractive investment, analysts said. However, technical indicators point to signs of exhaustion, said DailyFx currency strategist Ilya Spivak, adding "we might get a pause relatively soon, at least to consolidate." Silver jumped 2.5% to $27.69 per ounce after hitting its highest since April 2013. Platinum rose 0.7% to $973.52 and palladium edged up 0.1% to $2,183.52. (Reporting by Brijesh Patel in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)
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