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ECB's Draghi says euro zone recovery 'fragile'

Monday, 16 Sep 2013 | 4:11 AM ET
Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank
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Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said on Monday that the euro zone's economy remained "fragile", unemployment was "still far too high" and reiterated that the euro zone's central bank would keep rates low.

Speaking at a German industry event in Berlin, Draghi said while euro zone economic growth of 0.3 percent in the second quarter was welcome, "the recovery is only in its infancy".

In July the ECB abandoned its tradition of never pre-committing on future moves by using so-called "forward guidance" to say it would keep its interest rates at current or lower levels for an extended period, a message Draghi reiterated on Monday.

"Given the overall subdued outlook for inflation extending into the medium term, the ECB's Governing Council expects the key ECB interest rates to remain at present or lower levels for an extended period of time," Draghi said.

He also said governments'consolidation efforts and the ECB's OMT (Outright Monetary Transactions) bond-buying program had helped bring about an improvement in markets.

"More generally, the risk of an extreme event in the euro area has fallen - and therefore the risk of an adverse impact on price stability."

Draghi also said that restarting lending to the private sector was a priority.

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