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February 12th 2008

ECB Holds Interest Rates

At its meeting last week, the European Central Bank (ECB) held its Euro-zone benchmark lending rate at 4.00%.  While the decision itself came as no surprise, analysts were nonetheless waiting with baited breath to hear what remarks would accompany it.  Jean Claude Trichet, the Bank’s President, eased up on hawkish comments he made the previous month, when he signaled that his primary concern was inflation rather than the risk of economic recession. This month, however, he changed his rhetoric markedly, indicating that the ECB was less willing to preempt rising price levels and would instead shift its focus to the possibility of a ‘sharp slowing’ of EU growth. Forbes reports:

Our view [is] that rate hikes are definitely off the agenda at this stage and by bringing a greater degree of uncertainty on the growth assessment, the ECB may be getting ready for a shift towards a more dovish policy language.

Read More: Euro sags after Trichet tones down hawkish stance

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Posted by Adam Kritzer | in Central Banks, Euro | No Comments »

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