The European Central Bank left the minimum bid rate at 0.0%. The deposit rate is at -0.4%.
The most important thing is that the regulator kept quantitative easing at 80 billion euros a month until April 2017. After that, the ECB will continue asset purchases at 60 billion euros a month until December 2017 or beyond if necessary.
The ECB president Mario Draghi is speaking after the ECB meeting. Here are the most important details from his comments
– The ECB can buy assets below the deposit rate. This is a possible, but not necessary step. Buying below deposit rate will ensure a smooth implementation of QE.
– GDP forecast for 2017 is revised up from 1.6% to 1.7%.
– The inflation forecast for 2017 is revised up from 1.2% to 1.3%.
– The ECB discussed 2 options: continue QE at 80 billion euros a month or the option the members chose (leave at 80 billion euros a month until April 2017, then buy 60 billion euros a month in asset purchases until December 2017 or beyond if necessary).
– The ECB members haven’t discussed reducing QE to zero and that’s never been on the table.
EUR/USD fell to 1.06 on Draghi’s comments.