* Dollar index slides to lowest since January 2015
* ECB sticks to outlook for growth, inflation
(Recasts with U.S. data, ECB comments, updates prices) LONDON, Sept 7 (Reuters) - The price of gold rose to a one-year peak on Thursday after the dollar tumbled on the back of weak U.S. jobs data and an unchanged growth and inflation outlook from the European Central Bank.
Spot gold climbed to an intraday peak of $1,345.25 an
ounce, the strongest since September 2016, before paring gains to $1,341.54 by 1340 GMT, a rise of 0.6 percent. It eased 0.3 percent in the previous session.
U.S. gold futures for December delivery rose 0.6
percent to $1,346.80. The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits jumped to its highest level in more than two years last week amid a surge in applications in hurricane-ravaged Texas.
The weak data helped push the dollar index down to
91.405, the lowest since January 2015. "The weaker U.S. economic data pushed the odds for a rate hike to ground. Clearly the Fed cannot be comfortable with weaker job market and the fact is that worse is still yet to come," said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Think Markets. Higher interest rates tend to boost the dollar and push up bond yields, putting pressure on gold prices by increasing the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion. Also pressuring the dollar on Thursday was a resurgent euro, which jumped to a nine-day high after the ECB broadly stuck to its outlook for growth and inflation. Continuing tensions with North Korea over its nuclear tests provided further support for safe-haven gold. "Geopolitical tensions remain elevated surrounding North Korea, so I'd expect that would keep gold pretty well supported in the short term and in the week ahead," said Jonathan Butler, commodities analyst at Mitsubishi in London. China agreed on Thursday that the United Nations should take more action against North Korea after its latest nuclear test, while also pushing for dialogue to help ease tensions.
The market will soon start to shift its focus to the next U.S. Federal Reserve's next monetary policy meeting, due to begin on Sept. 19. "I expect some downward pressure on gold starting next week and a rebound in the dollar short-term," said Samson Li, an analyst with Thomson Reuters-owned metals consultancy GFMS.
Silver rose 0.8 percent to $17.97 an ounce, while platinum dipped 0.3 percent to $999.99 an ounce. Palladium added 0.2 percent to $941.10 an ounce.
(Additional reporting by Apeksha Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Dale Hudson, Greg Mahlich)