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Scope for 'prudent but obvious' rejig of ECB policy - Hansson

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Scope for 'prudent but obvious' rejig of ECB policy - Hansson

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By Helen Reid LONDON (Reuters) – The better outlook for the euro zone’s economy justifies a shift in European Central Bank policies, and the central bank should not depend solely on asset purchases to implement its goals, policymaker Ardo Hansson said on Wednesday. “With greater confidence in the outlook for the real economy there is some scope for a prudent but obvious recalibration of policies,” Hansson said at a banking conference hosted by UBS. Hansson, who is Estonia’s ECB member and seen as one of its more hawkish ratesetters, added: “The world looks better to us,” noting the euro zone economy was enjoying “strong” growth. Thanks to this more supportive economic backdrop, the bank feels “more and more confident” that inflation will reach the desired levels in the bloc, he said. The ECB’s array of monetary policy tools should not be limited to asset purchases, he emphasised. “Monetary policy is not only about asset purchases. We can’t make the stance of policy synonymous with one important but still limited part of the programme,” he said. “One of my colleagues always likes to say monetary policy is not a solo, it’s a quartet: you have the asset purchases, the accumulated stock of purchases, the reinvestment policy and forward guidance.” Late last month the ECB laid out plans to cut its stimulus programme from the start of next year to 30 billion euros a month from 60 billion. That arrangement will run until September.

(Reporting by Helen Reid, Editing by Marc Jones/Jeremy Gaunt)
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