THE EUROPEAN Central Bank’s governing council – the team that decides on Eurozone monetary policy – finally came around to fully backing quantitative easing.
ECB boss Mario Draghi said after the QE decision yesterday that the council had been “unanimous in stating that the asset purchase programme is a true monetary policy tool in a legal sense”.
“That is important because it establishes the principle that this is a monetary policy tool that should be used in the right situations but it is part of our toolbox,” he said.
“Second there was a large majority on the need to trigger it now, and so large that we didn't need to take a vote.”
Draghi refused to name names when asked who specifically had opposed the policy in the past.
Stephanie Flanders, chief european strategist at JP Morgan, said it was an important landmark “that a ‘large majority’ of the ECB’s Governing Council believes a programme of large-scale, open-ended quantitative easing is both a necessary and appropriate response to the ongoing threat of deflation.”
“The markets needed to hear that the European Central Bank was both willing and institutionally able to pursue its inflation target, however tortuous the path to that objective might be,” Flanders said.
German policy makers have made no secret of their disdain for the policy of central banks buying government debt.