Key interest rate unchanged at 4.0 percent

At its meeting the council of the European Central Bank (ECB) yesterday decided to leave the three most important key interest rates at 4.00%, 5.00% and 3.00% respectively.

The president of the ECB, Mr. Jean-Claude Trichet, justified this step during the press conference in the afternoon by pointing to existing strong short-term inflational tendencies and short-term risk to price stability due to growing money and loan volumes. Nevertheless, he stressed that the economic basis of Europe is sound. The macroeconomic analysis of the economic situation in Europe predicted a slower but continuous growth in GDP, he said. Insecurity due to the turbulences in the financial markets, however, remained high. Against this backdrop, the council of the ECB considered price stability as its top priority at the moment, said Mr. Trichet. GERMAN