European Central Bank keeps interest rates unchanged

The European Central Bank has kept interest rates unchanged. The following monetary policy decisions were taken by the ECB on January 21. According to the ECB, 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 0.00%, 0.25% and -0.50% respectively.  The ECB further stated that  the Governing Council will continue the purchases under the pandemic emergency purchase programme (PEPP) with a total envelope of €1,850 billion. The Governing Council will conduct net asset purchases under the PEPP until at least the end of March 2022 and, in any case, until it judges that the coronavirus crisis phase is over. The purchases under the PEPP will be conducted to preserve favourable financing conditions over the pandemic period. If favourable financing conditions can be maintained with asset purchase flows that do not exhaust the envelope over the net purchase horizon of the PEPP, the envelope need not be used in full. Equally, the envelope can be recalibrated if required to maintain favourable financing conditions to help counter the negative pandemic shock to the path of inflation. The Governing Council will continue to reinvest the principal payments from maturing securities purchased under the PEPP until at least the end of 2023. In any case, the future roll-off of the PEPP portfolio will be managed to avoid interference with the appropriate monetary policy stance.  

The ECB also stated that  net purchases under the asset purchase programme (APP) will continue at a monthly pace of €20 billion.  

The pandemic continues to pose serious risks to public health and to the euro area and global economies,” ECB President Christine Lagarde said  during a press conference. 

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