Euro, bond yields fall on report ECB officials worried about currency

LONDON, Aug 31 (Reuters) - The euro and government bond yields fell while stocks rallied on Thursday after Reuters reported that the single currency’s rapid gains are worrying a growing number of ECB policymakers, raising the chance asset purchases will be phased out only slowly.

The euro fell to the day’s lows after the Reuters report. It was down 0.3 percent at $1.1846.

Germany’s 10-year bond yield dipped to 0.36 percent, trimming earlier rises, while southern European bond yields fell 2-3 bps.

The gap between Italian and German 10-year bond yields was the lowest in over a week at 169 basis points and almost 3 basis points tighter on the day.

Euro zone stock markets rallied as the euro slipped, rising to an intraday high, up 0.8 percent. Euro zone blue-chips were up 0.9 percent and euro zone banks hit their highest point of the day, up 1.5 percent.

The European Central Bank’s stimulus scheme is due to expire at the end of 2017 but formal talks over its future are only beginning, meaning the ECB is highly unlikely to take any decision at next Thursday’s rate meeting, the sources told Reuters. (Reporting by the London Markets Team, Editing by Abhinav Ramnarayan)