Bloomberg News

ECB Bond Buying May Hinder Reforms, Weidmann Tells NZZ

September 26, 2012

(Corrects to remove reference to fiscal policy in third paragraph.)

The European Central Bank’s bond purchasing program could hinder a recovery in the euro zone if it eases pressure on governments to implement reforms, German Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann said in an interview with Swiss newspaper Neue Zuercher Zeitung.

Weidmann questioned whether bond-purchase programs are the appropriate mechanism for solving structural problems, such as the lack of competitiveness and loss of trust in an individual country’s fiscal policies, according to the interview. Weidmann was the only member of the ECB Governing Council to oppose the so-called Outright Monetary Transactions program.

Weidmann said the ECB’s monetary policy runs the risk of becoming dependent on political decisions. Maintaining price stability is the bank’s primary purpose, he said.

In response to a newspaper report that he had considered leaving the post, Weidmann said resignation wasn’t an option.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nadja Brandt in Los Angeles at nbrandt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrea Snyder at asnyder5@bloomberg.net


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