March 10, 2017 / 7:53 AM / 10 months ago

German yields set for biggest fortnightly rise in nearly two years

LONDON, March 10 (Reuters) - Europe’s benchmark government bond yield was set for its biggest two-week rise since June 2015 on Friday as ECB signals of diminishing urgency for policy action mixed with expectations for an imminent rate hike in the United States.

Germany’s 10-year bond yield climbed as much as 4 basis points on Friday to a five-week high of 0.46 percent , meaning it has now risen more than 25 bps over the past two weeks.

The gap between two- and 10-year yields topped 130 basis points, its widest since June 2014. This so-called steepening of the yield curve indicates investor expectations for future inflation are rising.

Yields across the euro zone rose have risen broadly since the European Central Bank removed one phrase from his standard introductory statement to Thursday’s meeting that pledged it would act “using all the instruments available” to achieve its objectives, highlighting an improvement in the economic outlook.

ECB President Mario Draghi said the change signaled “that there is no longer that sense of urgency in taking further actions”.

Amid the broad bond market rout, Italian 10-year yields were set for their biggest weekly rise in four months.

The rise in yields also comes ahead of closely-watched U.S. employment data later on Friday, which some expect to show job growth in February was far more than economists forecast following bumper private sector data earlier this week.

A strong report would further cement expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates at least three times this year, starting next week. (Reporting by John Geddie; Editing by Jamie McGeever)

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