PRECIOUS-Gold set for 2nd weekly loss ahead of U.S. jobs data
* Gold above three-week lows hit on Thursday
* Gold down about 0.4 percent on the week
* Coming up: U.S. nonfarm payrolls at 1330 GMT
(Updates throughout, changes dateline from SINGAPORE)
LONDON, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Gold edged above three-week lows on Friday, but was still set for a second week of losses as the dollar steadied after a European Central Bank's surprise interest cut and ahead of a crucial U.S. jobs report.
Investors waited for monthly U.S. nonfarm payrolls data later on Friday for further direction and clues on the timing of the tapering of the Federal Reserve's economic stimulus.
A strong number would increase expectations the Federal Reserve will start tapering its bond-buying programme sooner rather than later, particularly after Thursday's robust U.S. growth figures.
An end to the Fed's quantitative easing programme would hurt gold, which has been boosted by central bank liquidity and a low interest rates environment, encouraging investors to put money into non-interest-bearing assets.
Economists polled by Reuters expect 125,000 jobs to have been added in October, although last month's 16-day U.S. government shutdown may affect the figures.
"A relatively low number for the U.S. non-farm payrolls data has already been discounted by the market, but it is possible that we see a small uptick in the employment rate to 7.3 percent," VTB Capital analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov said.
"The market is today trying to consolidate and if we don't get any surprise from the non-farm payrolls we will probably hold here with support at $1,300 and then $1,270," he added.
Spot gold edged up 0.1 percent to $1,308.89 an ounce by 1053 GMT. The metal has lost 0.4 percent for the week so far, having hit a three-week low of $1,298.31 on Thursday.
Comex gold futures for December was up $0.6 to $1,309.10 an ounce.
The dollar was near a seven-week high against a basket of currencies, also boosted by data on Thursday showing U.S. gross domestic product grew at a 2.8 percent annual rate in the third quarter, the quickest pace in a year.
Gold has lost about a fifth of its value this year due to fears the Fed would begin cutting back its $85 billion monthly bond purchases. The metal's inflation-hedge appeal has been burnished by the bond purchases and low interest rates.
Investors had believed a prolonged budget battle in Washington in October would prevent the Fed from withdrawing support for the economy and possibly push the tapering into next year. However, Thursday's GDP data rekindled fears of a roll-back at the Fed's December meeting.
Spot silver rose 0.1 percent to $21.67 an ounce, having fallen to a three-week low of $21.36 in the previous session.
Spot platinum gained 0.2 percent to $1,451.50 an ounce.
The gold-platinum ratio could be set to ease further after reaching a two-month earlier in the week, Societe Generale said in a note.
Spot palladium fell 0.5 percent to $754.72 an ounce. It reached its highest level since Aug. 15 at $762.25 on Thursday.
(Additional reporting by A. Ananthalakshmi in Singapore; Editing by William Hardy)