Correspondent, Brussels
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Oct 16, 2014

ECB eyes extra funding to Greek banks as market plunge rocks Athens

ATHENS/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank will loosen its rules on collateral quality to give Greek banks access to more funding, a Greek central bank official said, to help keep them steady following a plunge in Greek stocks and bonds.

Another person familiar with the matter said the ECB was set to discuss loosening collateral rules for Greek banks at a meeting of policymakers on Thursday.

Oct 14, 2014

Europe’s top court weighs German challenge to ECB

LUXEMBOURG, Oct 14 (Reuters) – Europe’s top court on Tuesday
heard a challenge to the European Central Bank’s landmark
bond-buying scheme to contain the euro zone crisis in a case
underscoring deep concerns in Germany over ECB clout.

The case comes more than two years after the ECB backed a
scheme to buy government bonds, called Outright Monetary
Transactions (OMT). Although the plan has since been all-but
moth-balled, the ruling, due in the middle of next year, could
have wide significance.

Oct 13, 2014

France faces euro zone peer pressure to tighten spending plans

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – France faced intensifying pressure from euro zone peers on Monday to tighten spending next year amid a growing rift over its plans to flout European budget rules.

The dispute with France over its planned 2015 budget is a test of new euro zone powers to police public finances and is complicated by a wider debate about how to use government money to help the stagnating European economy.

Oct 13, 2014

France faces pressure from peers to tighten spending plans

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – France faced renewed pressure from euro zone peers on Monday to tighten spending next year, amid a growing rift over its plans to flout European budget rules.

The dispute with France, the euro zone’s second-largest economy, over its planned budget, is an added problem for the bloc, which is hamstrung by political division while its economy is slowing.

Oct 7, 2014

ECB quietly pins its hopes on falling euro

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Grappling with an ailing euro zone economy and stagnant prices, the European Central Bank is hoping that help will come from something it cannot control: the value of the euro.

As Washington prepares to stopper the supply of cheap money that has been helping it revive the United States, the euro has started to fall steeply against the dollar.

Sep 25, 2014

ECB’s test may not be final word on health of Europe’s banks

FRANKFURT, Sept 25 (Reuters) – It has been billed as a make
or break moment for Europe’s banks: the publication of rigorous
industry-wide health checks next month after three previous
tests failed to spot problem lenders.

Yet – seven years after huge bank losses drove some
countries to the brink of bankruptcy – investors braced for a
grim reckoning this time will be disappointed. The European
Central Bank, under pressure from Rome, Berlin and other
capitals seeking to protect their recovering patients, is
instead likely to temper its judgement.

Sep 19, 2014

Banks repay loans to ECB after fresh offer of cheaper credit

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – European Central Bank plans to bolster lending to business were dealt another setback on Friday after banks decided to repay billions of euros of cheap ECB credit, sapping money available to lend to business.

The news came a day after the central bank’s fresh offer of up to 400 billion euros (314.33 billion pounds) of low-cost loans fell flat, casting doubt on its plans to shore up the euro zone’s faltering economy.

Sep 18, 2014

Low take-up for cheap bank credit raises pressure on ECB

FRANKFURT, Sept 18 (Reuters) – The European Central Bank saw
far less demand than expected on Thursday for its new four-year
loans to banks, raising doubts about a stimulus package it hopes
will stave off deflation and revive the euro zone economy.

The launch of the scheme, a central plank of the ECB’s
efforts to coax reluctant banks to lend, saw the euro zone’s
central bank hand out 82.6 billion euros of 400 billion euros
($515.16 billion) on offer to 255 banks.

Sep 18, 2014

ECB hands out cheap credit to banks to boost economy

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank handed out the first of its new four-year loans to banks on Thursday, the flagship tool in a new stimulus package it hopes will stave off price deflation and revive the ailing euro zone economy.

Take-up of the 400 billion euro offer of cheap credit from the euro zone’s central bank was low but banks will get a second chance in December to apply for the cash, which is granted on condition that they lend to businesses.

Sep 14, 2014

World waits for white smoke from U.S. Fed

FRANKFURT, Sept 14 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve may
give clearer hints on when it will hike the cost of borrowing in
the United States in the coming week, as struggling Europe
braces for a tight vote in Scotland on whether to leave the
United Kingdom.

As the U.S. economy picks up pace, its central bank is
inching closer to raising interest rates, a move that will send
ripples across the globe. In the euro zone, however, the
European Central Bank is moving in the opposite direction in a
desperate bid to rekindle growth and inflation.

    • 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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