THE FIRST ever set of timely minutes from the European Central Bank (ECB) reveal a divide among the rate-setters that was partly overcome by the ECB’s chief economist.
The minutes of the meeting – during which it was decided that the ECB would undertake a programme of quantitative easing – show how Peter Praet recalled the commitments made by the ECB in December. In December, the ECB said it would extend its stimulus measures if the outlook for inflation had become worse.
He also says it could be argued that evidence clearly suggested there was a need to take action at the present meeting to provide further monetary stimulus.
Scepticism among some members was evident. Some argued government bond purchases should be only a last resort to bar an extremely adverse scenario. It is not known which members opposed the policy.