ECB Keeps Interest Rates Unchanged

The European Central Bank has kept its main interest rate unchanged but left the door open for a further rise in July.

Extract from the "Introductory statement to the press conference" by Jean-Claude Trichet, President of the ECB

Based on its regular economic and monetary analyses, the Governing Council decided to keep the key ECB interest rates unchanged. The information that has become available since our meeting on 5 May 2011 confirms continued upward pressure on overall inflation, mainly owing to energy and commodity prices. The underlying pace of monetary expansion is gradually recovering. Monetary liquidity remains ample, with the potential to accommodate price pressures in the euro area. Furthermore, the most recent data confirm the positive underlying momentum of economic activity in the euro area, while uncertainty remains elevated. Overall, our monetary policy stance remains accommodative, lending support to economic activity. On balance, risks to the outlook for price stability are on the upside. Accordingly, strong vigilance is warranted. On the basis of our assessment, we will act in a firm and timely manner. We will do all that is needed to prevent recent price developments giving rise to broad-based inflationary pressures. We remain strongly determined to secure a firm anchoring of inflation expectations in the euro area in line with our aim of maintaining inflation rates below, but close to, 2% over the medium term. This is a prerequisite for monetary policy to make an ongoing contribution towards supporting growth and job creation in the euro area.

The Governing Council today also decided to continue conducting its main refinancing operations (MROs) as fixed rate tender procedures with full allotment for as long as necessary, and at least until the end of the ninth maintenance period of 2011 on 11 October 2011. This procedure will also remain in use for the Eurosystem’s special-term refinancing operations with a maturity of one maintenance period, which will continue to be conducted for as long as needed, and at least until the end of the third quarter of 2011. The fixed rate in these special-term refinancing operations will be the same as the MRO rate prevailing at the time. Furthermore, the Governing Council decided to conduct the three-month longer-term refinancing operations (LTROs) to be allotted on 27 July, 31 August and 28 September 2011 as fixed rate tender procedures with full allotment. The rates in these three-month operations will be fixed at the average rate of the MROs over the life of the respective LTRO.

As stated on previous occasions, the provision of liquidity and the allotment modes for refinancing operations will be adjusted when appropriate, taking into account the fact that all the non-standard measures taken during the period of acute financial market tensions are, by construction, temporary in nature.

ECB Keeps Interest Rates Unchanged, ECB
6/9/2011 1:58:20 PM