It is "not normal" that both sides of the Atlantic do not have the same set of rules, says Jean-Claude Trichet, former ECB president, commenting on the BNP Paribas fine.» Read More
The European Central Bank kept rates on hold at 4 percent, as expected, on Thursday, sticking to its mandate to fight inflation at any cost. Economists now think the possibility of monetary easing is more likely as late as the fourth quarter.
Wall Street banks are the first to be blamed for the credit crunch. Central banks come a close second, but as the Federal Reserve's image is suffering, the European Central Bank looks as solid as a rock.
The European Central Bank's mission to fight inflation prevents it from worrying about economic weakness. But an abrupt slowdown could anger politicians and endanger the central bank's very mandate.
A look at the data and happenings that shaped the first quarter for European businesses and markets.
After a dismal first quarter, investors look forward to what the spring has in store; but apart from a new gold rush and the euro rising further, there seems to be little to anticipate.
The central banks of Britain and Switzerland added extra funds to ease pressure on high interbank lending rates on Thursday, while the European Central Bank said it was ready to step in with extra cash.
Top central bankers warned on Wednesday there was no end in sight yet to the global credit crunch as German banking giant Deutsche said the crisis threatened its profit target for this year.