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ECB bond buys down

THE European Central Bank under Jean Claude Trichet spent €146bn buying the Government bonds of stressed eurozone member countries last week, down €2.3bn on the previous week and one of the lowest totals for some time.

The purchases kept the total bought by the ECB since the programme began in May at €76.5bn, when rounded to the nearest half billion euro. Weekly purchases have shrunk in comparison to the amounts the ECB was spending in the early stages of the programme.