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The European Central Bank launches new bond procurement program



Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank (ECB) attends a news conference on the outcome of the Governing Council meeting at the ECB's headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, March 7, 2019.

Kai Pfaffenbach | Reuters

The European Central Bank (ECB) announced a massive new bond buying program on Thursday in an attempt to stimulate the vulnerable euro area economy.

President Mario Draghi announced that the central bank would cut the main deposit rate by 1

0 basis points to -0.5%, in line with expectations. The ECB now expects interest rates to remain at their current or lower levels until they have seen the inflation outlook "robustly converge to a level sufficiently close to but below 2% within its forecast horizon, and such convergence has been sustained."

The ECB has also changed the TLTRO interest rate to provide more favorable bank lending terms and match it to the refinancing rate, deleting an earlier spread of 10 basis points. In line with market expectations, the ECB also introduced interest rates, a measure encouraged by the heads of various major European banks during the last earnings season.

The central bank's quantitative easing program will amount to EUR 20 billion per month for the purchase of assets for as long as it is deemed necessary.

The markets had much expected some form of stimulus package, although hawks on the board of the European Central Bank (ECB) had moved in recent weeks to negate the scope of the impending measures.

A declining economy in the eurozone, sustained low inflation and trade war between the United States and China had all pointed to the central bank being forced to inject stimulus.

Recent economic data have not been promising, although recent Purchasing Management Indexes (PMIs) indicated some stability despite lasting industrial weakness.

This is a news story, have a look at later for more.


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