Draghi: ECB rates to stay low for ‘extended period’

European Central Bank president Mario Draghi has said interest rates will remain at record lows for some time to come while the currency bloc continues to battle with low inflation.

The ECB announced today that it has voted to keep interest rates at their current level of 0.15 per cent.

Interest rates were first brought down to their current record low in June earlier this year in an attempt to fight the risk of the eurozone falling into a deflationary cycle.

Speaking at a press conference following a meeting of the central bank’s governing council Draghi said the decision to leave rates unchanged reflected signs of the “continued moderate and uneven recovery of the euro area economy, with low rates of inflation and subdued monetary and credit dynamics”.

Interest rates are also likely to remain at their current levels until inflation shows signs of improving in the eurozone, according to Draghi.

He said: “We will maintain a high degree of monetary accommodation. Concerning our forward guidance, the key ECB interest rates will remain at present levels for an extended period of time in view of the current outlook for inflation.”

However Draghi reassured that inflation in the eurozone remained on track to reach the ECB’s target of keeping inflation rates below but close to 2 per cent.