Saturday, July 28, 2012

ECB buys time for Euro - also bonds?

by Stephanie Flanders

BBC News

July 28, 2012

Mario Draghi's comments in London this week prompted some euphoria in the financial markets, which Chancellor Merkel and President Hollande seem keen to encourage.

It tells you something about the state of anxiety about the Euro - and the centrality of the ECB's position in this sorry mess - that a statement of support from Dr Draghi, on a panel at a conference in London, should have had such an impact.

Still, the ECB president is someone who chooses his words and intonation carefully.

Thursday's comments were more emphatic than we have heard before. He also seemed to draw a link between the high level of government borrowing costs ("sovereign premia") and the ECB's own mandate.

Here are the key lines:

"To the extent that the size of these sovereign premia hamper the functioning of the monetary policy transmission channel, they come within our mandate.... We have to cope with the financial fragmentation, address these issues.... Within our mandate, the ECB is ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro.... And believe me, it will be enough."


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