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The ECB Faces a Balance Sheet Dilemma

DiMartino Booth, Danielle, (2017), «The ECB Faces a Balance Sheet Dilemma», BloombergView, 9 Μαρτίου

Nature versus nurture. That philosophical debate is more pertinent than ever when it comes to the interventionist efforts of central banks that seek to will their economies back onto a sustainable growth path. But even the noblest of intentions can bump up against limitations when nature, in this case the free functioning of financial markets, is hampered to a great degree.

Such is the dilemma facing European Central Bank President Mario Draghi as preparations begin for the day next month when the institution starts reducing the amount of money its pumps into the financial system. The ECB said in December that it will start reducing monthly bond purchases in April, from 80 billion euros a month ($86 billion) to 60 billion euros.

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