ECB maintains bond-buying and rates status quo

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The ECB has confirmed its current monthly asset purchases of €80bn will remain in place until March 2017, as it keeps rates on hold in its latest governing council decision.

The interest rate on the deposit facility remains at negative 0.4 per cent, while the main financing operations sits at zero and the marginal lending facility sits at 0.25 per cent.

Last month markets were rattled by reports that the ECB was considering reducing its bond purchases in €10bn increments, contrasting with expectations that it would extend the programme beyond its March 2017 deadline.

The ECB’s announcement today confirmed that it would remain in place until its existing deadline or beyond “and in any case until it sees a sustained adjustment in the path of inflation consistent with its inflation aim”.