Correspondent, Brussels
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Nov 21, 2014

ECB’s Draghi throws door to quantitative easing wide open

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – European Central Bank President Mario Draghi threw the door wide open on Friday for more dramatic action to rescue the euro zone economy, saying “excessively low” inflation had to be raised quickly by whatever means necessary.

Draghi said there was now no sign of economic improvement in the months ahead and that the ECB would expand and step up its programme to pump more money into the currency bloc if its current measures fell short of lifting inflation.

Nov 21, 2014

Draghi throws door to QE wide open as recovery wanes

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – European Central Bank President Mario Draghi threw the door wide open on Friday for more dramatic action to rescue the euro zone economy, saying “excessively low” inflation had to be raised quickly by whatever means necessary.

Draghi said there was now no sign of economic improvement in the months ahead and said the ECB would expand and step up its program to pump more money into the currency bloc if its current measures fell short of lifting inflation.

Nov 20, 2014

ECB dips toe into dead sea of rebundled debt

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank is set to embark this week on a scheme to buy the kind of rebundled debt that sparked the global economic crash.

With sparse investor interest its efforts could fall short.

Asset backed securities (ABS), reparcelled debt that mixes high-risk loans with safer credit, gained notoriety when rebundled home loans in the United States unraveled to spark financial turmoil.

Nov 16, 2014

Spotlight falls on Europe’s stuttering economy

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – As large parts of Europe’s economy grind almost to a halt, attention will focus this week on the latest assessments of business confidence in the euro zone and Germany, which has just narrowly avoided a recession.

While the United States economy has accelerated and China holds a slower but steady course, euro zone countries have remained sluggish, with overall growth in output slowing to a trickle.

Nov 16, 2014

Global Economy Weekahead: Spotlight falls on Europe’s stuttering economy

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – As large parts of Europe’s economy grind almost to a halt, attention will focus this week on the latest assessments of business confidence in the euro zone and Germany, which has just narrowly avoided a recession.

While the United States economy has accelerated and China holds a slower but steady course, euro zone countries have remained sluggish, with overall growth in output slowing to a trickle.

Nov 13, 2014

ECB warned euro zone inflation, growth to be lower than expected

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Professional forecasters have cut their outlook for euro zone inflation and growth, underlining a trend that could prompt the European Central Bank to take more action to kick-start the region’s flagging economy.

The 61 economists, academics and others surveyed by the ECB expect euro zone inflation of 1.0 percent next year and 1.4 percent in 2016, data released on Thursday showed — down from earlier forecasts of 1.2 percent and 1.5 percent respectively.

Oct 29, 2014

Banks see upswing in loan demand across euro zone

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Around one in five banks across the euro zone expect companies to approach them for more credit as the year draws to a close, with those in Germany and France most optimistic, the European Central Bank said on Wednesday.

The upbeat forecast bodes well for an improvement in the bloc, where economic growth has been grinding to a virtual halt. Much of the blame for the slowdown has been blamed on a dearth of credit to firms to expand their businesses.

Oct 27, 2014

ECB stimulus may lack desired scale, QE an option: sources

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank’s plan to buy private sector assets may fall short of its goal and pressure is likely to build for bolder action early next year, with government bond purchases an option, ECB sources said.

The euro zone’s central bank started buying covered bonds last week and plans to buy asset-backed securities (ABS), or bundled loans, later this year — both with a view to fostering lending to businesses and thereby supporting the bloc’s economy.

Oct 24, 2014

25 European banks set to fail health checks: sources

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – A group of 25 banks have failed European health checks, while up to 10 of those continue to have a capital shortfall, two people familiar with the matter said on Friday, providing a snapshot of the health of the region’s lenders.

The health checks, led by the European Central Bank, found that banks in countries including Greece, Cyprus, Slovenia and Portugal had fallen short of a minimum capital benchmark at the end of last year and that up to 10 remained in difficulty now, the sources said.

Oct 23, 2014

Big bang, not big bucks, the key for euro zone bank lending

DUBLIN/FRANKFURT, Oct 23 (Reuters) – If the European Central
Bank really wants to kick-start the euro zone economy, it should
ensure the bloc’s banks are up to the task of lending.

The International Monetary Fund has estimated that nearly
three-quarters of euro zone banks need to significantly change
their business models before they will be able to meet the
demand for credit when the economy recovers.

    • About John

      "I am a Reuters correspondent in Brussels, writing about the European Union. I moved here last year from Germany, where I had reported about the financial crisis, turning up numerous scoops and even winning a prestigious business reporting award. Beforehand, I worked with The Sunday Times in London."
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