European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi didn’t leave any doubt about his institution’s conviction to do “whatever it takes” to counter a fall in inflation expectations when he spoke at the banks annual gathering recently in Sintra, Portugal.
All instruments are on the table and can be deployed. That was the message. The question now is: Will anything happen as early as this week?
Expectations are divided as to whether the ECB wants to pre-empt a policy move by the U.S. Federal Reserve that pushes down the dollar and strengthens the euro as this would hurt euro zone exporters and weigh on inflation further.
Traditional ECB watchers though expect a change in the central bank’s forward guidance at this month’s meeting on Thursday and then potential action on interest rates at its meeting in September.
“In response to the weak growth and still subdued inflation, the ECB will likely adjust its guidance in July and vow to keep rates at ‘present or lower’ rather than just at ‘present’ levels,” said Florian Hense, an economist with Berenberg, in a research note earlier this month.
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