FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Banks began early repayment of crisis funds to the European Central Bank on Wednesday, shrinking the ECB’s balance sheet while the world’s other big central banks are still spending to support their economies.
Combined with lackluster demand for weekly funding, it helped boost the euro to its highest level against the dollar since November 2011.
FRANKFURT/DUBLIN (Reuters) – The European Central Bank appears happy to leave Ireland and Portugal to fend for themselves, holding off directly buying the bail-out recipients’ debt unless markets turn sour again.
Both Ireland and Portugal have re-entered sovereign bond markets recently, but the ECB has left investors and governments guessing about when it could use its new bond-buying programme, known as Outright Monetary Transactions (OMT).
MANNHEIM, Germany (Reuters) – German analyst and investor morale rose to its highest level in more than 2-1/2 years in January, in a sign the euro zone crisis is no longer hitting Europe’s largest economy as hard as it was late last year.
The Mannheim-based ZEW think tank said its monthly poll of economic sentiment climbed for a second month to reach its highest level since May 2010, rising to 31.5 points from 6.9 in December. It was the biggest monthly rise in a year.
WIESBADEN, Germany (Reuters) – The German economy contracted by a larger-than-expected 0.5 percent in the final quarter of 2012, a preliminary estimate from the Federal Statistics office showed on Tuesday, as the euro zone crisis weighed on exports and corporate investment.
The weak fourth quarter pushed overall growth for the year down to 0.7 percent, a sharp slowdown from the 3.0 percent registered in 2011 and a post-reunification record of 4.2 percent in 2010. The 2012 figure was below a Reuters consensus forecast for a growth rate of 0.8 percent.
FRANKFURT, Jan 10 (Reuters) – The European Central Bank is
expected to keep interest rates at a record low of 0.75 percent
on Thursday, refraining from a cut as the euro zone economy
shows some signs of stabilising and inflation still tops its
The 17-country euro zone is in recession, but recent data
points to some stabilisation, and ECB President Mario Draghi
might strike a slightly more positive tone in the news
conference that follows the rate decision.
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank is expected to keep interest rates at a record low of 0.75 percent on Thursday, refraining from a cut as the euro zone economy shows some signs of stabilising and inflation still tops its target.
The 17-country euro zone is in recession, but recent data points to some stabilisation, and ECB President Mario Draghi could strike a slightly more positive tone in the news conference that follows the rate decision.
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The banker now in charge of rescuing the euro wants his top staff to take Sundays off. Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank, eschews long meetings and refrains from lecturing his colleagues, senior ECB officials say.
Until Draghi took over a year ago, insiders say, the bank had a workaholic, micro-managed regime. But even as the Italian has proved ready to intervene in the markets and try policies that would have been unthinkable a few years ago, he has brought a freer, more hands-off culture to the bank.
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The central banks of Germany and Austria on Friday forecast barely any economic growth in 2013, with the Bundesbank flagging risks of a recession in the euro zone’s biggest economy as the debt crisis hits the bloc’s core.
The Bundesbank expects Germany’s economy to grow just 0.4 percent next year, down from a June forecast of 1.6 percent. The new projection is marked by “a high degree of uncertainty”, it added, and “the balance of risks is on the downside”.
FRANKFURT, Dec 7 (Reuters) – Germany’s Bundesbank cut its
growth outlook for next year on Friday as the euro zone debt
crisis takes its toll on the bloc’s largest economy, but added
that the country would return to its growth path soon.
The move comes a day after the European Central Bank cut its
growth forecasts for next year pointing to weaker growth
prospects for the bloc’s core countries, such as Germany, France
and the Netherlands.
FRANKFURT, Dec 6 (Reuters) – The European Central Bank held
interest rates at a record low of 0.75 percent on Thursday,
leaving investors to shift their attention to new economic
forecasts for clues about possible cuts next year.
ECB President Mario Draghi is expected to present a downward
revision of the bank’s staff projections at his news conference,
due to start at 1330 GMT. The projections will also include the
first forecasts for 2014.