Lagarde Says ECB Has Time to Assess Stimulus Effectiveness
Christine Lagarde, president of the ECB, at a news conference in Frankfurt, on March 12, 2020.(Photographer: Alex Kraus/Bloomberg)

Lagarde Says ECB Has Time to Assess Stimulus Effectiveness

Christine Lagarde signaled the European Central Bank will keep policy unchanged at its next meeting after its massive emergency stimulus helped calmed markets.

Speaking in an interview with Financial Times published on Wednesday, the ECB president said that measures unleashed in the wake of the pandemic have “demonstrated their efficiency, their effectiveness.” The Governing Council’s next decision is in just over a week, its first since it almost doubled the size of its pandemic purchase program to 1.35 trillion euro ($1.52 trillion).

“We have done so much that we have quite a bit of time to assess” economic data “carefully,” Lagarde told the newspaper.

Her comments confirm the ECB has effectively switched to a wait-and-see mode after the economy began to bounce back. Executive Board member Isabel Schnabel said on Tuesday the recession could turn out somewhat milder than expected.

Lagarde also told the newspaper her institution wants to “explore every avenue available in order to combat climate change,” which could include examining “greener” changes to all of the central bank’s operations, including asset purchases.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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