Monday 23 April 2018

ECB chief speaks out over policy comments

James Mackenzie

EUROPEAN Central Bank (ECB) president Jean-Claude Trichet took issue with recent comments on ECB policy by Bundesbank chief Axel Weber, saying they did not represent the views of the central bank's governing council.

In an interview with Italian daily 'La Stampa' yesterday, Mr Trichet said the governing council as a whole did not agree with Mr Weber's remark last week that the ECB's government bond-buying programme had not worked and should be scrapped.

Any decision to scrap the programme could push up the cost of borrowing for Ireland.

"No! This is not the position of the governing council, with an overwhelming majority," he said.

"This non-standard measure, like all other such measures, was designed to help restore a more normal functioning of our monetary policy transmission mechanism.

"And we are withdrawing all the liquidity, euro for euro, that is supplied through this programme," Mr Trichet added.

Last week, Mr Weber said that policymakers should not wait too long before withdrawing emergency liquidity measures and raising interest rates, prompting widespread speculation about divisions among the ECB's leaders.

Irish Independent

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