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European Central Bank controls inflation through keeping interest rates unchanged

12 April 2024 08:00 (UTC+04:00)
European Central Bank controls inflation through keeping interest rates unchanged

The Governing Council of the European Central Bank (ECB) voted today to keep the three key ECB interest rates unchanged, Azernews reports, citing foreign media outlets.

The interest rate on the main refinancing operations, marginal lending facility and the deposit facility will remain unchanged at 4.50%, 4.75% and 4.00% respectively.

The Governing Council said that is determined to ensure that inflation returns to its 2% medium-term target and assured that “the key ECB interest rates are at levels that are making a substantial contribution to the ongoing disinflation process.”

Despite the decision to hold rates today, the central bank said it didn’t rule out cutting rates at the next meeting.

This decision comes following disappointing news from the US Federal Reserve yesterday, which saw inflation rise slightly to 3.5%.

Whether these developments will affect the upcoming Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee meeting on the 9 May remains to be seen.

Michael McGowan, managing director, foreign exchange at Bibby Financial Services said:

“The European Central Bank’s decision to hold interest rates today stands to ripple through international markets.

“Here in the UK, the bank’s consistently cautious approach has so far produced expensive consequences for exporters.

“Currency volatility remains a thorn in the side of UK businesses with Bibby Foreign Exchange’s own research finding that nearly a quarter of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) see exchange rate fluctuations as a significant issue impacting profitability.

“Looking ahead to summer – when the first interest rate cuts may hit – many eyes will be flitting between the ECB, Fed and Bank of England in the hope of spotting the first mover.

“In the meantime, it’s critical that UK SMEs trading abroad protect themselves against currency risk by solidifying their FX strategies.

“Those who do will be best set up to navigate the knock-on impact of rate decisions to come.”

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