Off The Wire
Lagarde comments at ECB press conference
The European Central Bank maintained an elevated flow of stimulus as expected on Thursday, fearing that any retreat now would accelerate an already worrisome rise in borrowing costs and choke off the fledgling recovery. read more
Following are highlights of ECB President Christine Lagarde's comments at a news conference after the policy meeting.
"We spent a lot of time looking at the quarterly staff projections and went deep into each and every item. I could say that we were somewhat more optimistic about the economic outlook than we were three months ago.
The latest signal that we are getting is a strong rebound in the second quarter and hopefully (that) will be amplified in the third quarter."
"We also looked into supply side bottlenecks...that will create some headwinds, certainly"
"On the financing front, we clearly see broadly stable financing conditions taken together the corporate and the household sector. There is a little bit of an increase in the corporate sector, clearly attributable to the Netherlands and Germany. Probably attributable to a tactical approach by banks in those particular countries.
"Overall, absent those particular factors, we see a little bit of tightening, very, very moderate though."