The Bank of England followed Thursday with its second emergency cut in borrowing costs this month, taking the benchmark rate to a record-low 0.1%. The BOE also announced a boost in its asset-purchase program target to 645 billion pounds ($752 billion), made up mainly of gilts.
The two decisions mark the latest in an escalating global response to an outbreak widely seen driving the economy into recession. ECB President Christine Lagarde reinforced the message that policy makers will do all they can, saying there are “no limits to our commitment to the euro.”
The program brings the total of the ECB’s planned bond purchases this year to 1.1 trillion euros, its biggest annual amount ever.
“The ECB was forced to react quickly,” Christoph Rieger, head of fixed-rate strategy at Commerzbank AG, wrote in a note to clients. “The new envelope of 750 billion euros should help bring in spreads more lastingly, but it is questionable whether this will be the turning point of the broader financial market rout.
The bonds of peripheral Eurozone members did indeed bounce today but Germany’s bonds sold off. Spreads might be tightening as a result of the ECB’s actions but this is significantly altered environment from what we have seen previously.Click HERE to subscribe to Fuller Treacy Money Back to top