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Jan. 21, 2021, 8:03 a.m. EST

European Central Bank leaves rates, bond-buying program unchanged

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By William Watts

The European Central Bank, as expected, made no changes to interest rates or its asset-buying program on Thursday after moving last month to bolster its efforts to support the eurozone economy. The ECB said its Governing Council left its deposit rate at negative 0.5% and its main refinancing rate at 0%. The central bank also affirmed it would maintain the "envelope" for its pandemic emergency purchase program at 1.85 trillion euros and would continue monthly purchases under the program until at least the end of March 2022. The ECB added that if "favorable financing conditions can be maintained with asset purchase flows that do not exhaust the envelope over the net purchase horizon of the PEPP, the envelope need not be used in full. Equally, the envelope can be recalibrated if required to maintain favorable financing conditions to help counter the negative pandemic shock to the path of inflation." The ECB also will continue its asset purchase program at a pace of 20 billion euros a month. ECB President Christine Lagarde will hold a news conference at 2:30 p.m. Frankfurt time, or 8:30 a.m. Eastern.

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