Sunday 11 December 2016

ECB goes further through the monetary looking-glass

Published 24/03/2016 | 02:30

Beware the pub questioner. Surprisingly often, they ask very good questions, and they expect a quick answer. "Why doesn't the ECB just give me the money - I'd know how to spend it," was one such the other week, albeit delivered a trifle truculently.

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Going through the mechanics of quantitative easing was clearly not the way to answer, even if one had felt up to the task. "You're dead right," seemed safer.

A better answer too, as it turns out. Last week, the ECB went a good bit down that road. They are not yet ready to put money straight into the guy's pocket, but they are prepared to give his bank money if it offers him a loan.

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