ECB Keeps Interest Rates Unchanged At 1.00%

UPDATE: The ECB left interest rates unchanged this month at 1.00%.

That was largely expected amid optimism generated by two three-year long term refinancing operations.

We’ll hear more about the decision at ECB President Mario Draghi’s press conference at 8:30 AM EST.

Here’s the full release:

8 March 2012 – Monetary policy decisions
At today’s meeting the Governing Council of the ECB decided that the interest rate on the main refinancing operations and the interest rates on the marginal lending facility and the deposit facility will remain unchanged at 1.00%, 1.75% and 0.25% respectively.

The President of the ECB will comment on the considerations underlying these decisions at a press conference starting at 2.30 p.m. CET today.



ORIGINAL: The European Central Bank will make their March monetary policy decision in just a few moments, at 7:45 AM EST.

Analysts expect the central bank to hold interest rates steady at 1.00%, and doubt that we’ll see any new game-changing liquidity support measures today.

This follows two three-year long-term refinancing operations that have flooded European banks with cheap money, bringing down yields on sovereign bonds and effectively alleviating what looked like an impending banking crisis in Europe. Moreover, prices have remained slightly above the ECB’s target of 2 per cent recently, with annualized CPI coming in at 2.7 per cent this month.

Most analysts were expecting a rate cut early this year—and continue to expect one in the coming quarters—however they believe the prospects that such action will occur right away have diminished amid LTRO-generated optimism.

We’ll have that decision for you right here when it comes out. Follow Mario Draghi’s post-decision press conference live at 8:30 AM EST at Money Game >

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