ECB cuts rates, increases asset buys more than expected


By Balazs Koranyi and Francesco Canepa
Thursday, March 10, 2016

FRANKFURT, Germany -- The European Central Bank cut all three of its interest rates and expanded its asset-buying program today, delivering a bigger-than-expected cocktail of actions to boost the economy and stop ultra-low inflation becoming entrenched.

The ECB cuts its deposit rate deeper into negative territory, charging banks more for parking their cash, and increased monthly asset buys to 80 billion euros from 60 billion euros, exceeding expectations for an increase to 70 billion.

Surprising markets, it cut its main refinancing rate to zero from 0.05 percent. The euro fell around 1 percent against the dollar.

Hoping to boost lending, consumption, and inflation, the ECB said it would also start buying corporate debt and would also launch four new rounds of cheap loan packages, to be extended by banks to the real economy. ...

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