The dispute between Germany and the European Central Bank worsens

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Series Details 20.04.16
Publication Date 20/04/2016
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On 8 April 2016, the German Minister of Finance, Wolfgang Schäuble, criticised the European Central Bank (ECB) for its aggressive monetary policy, claiming that it was one of the key reasons for the AfD party rising levels of support in Germany. Schäuble’s stance has been backed by a section of German economists and Christian Democrat politicians. Chancellor Angela Merkel and the president of the Bundesbank, Jens Weidmann, made attempts to temper the discussion, stating that the ECB was only implementing its goals to stabilise inflation. The statements from the German Minister of Finance have been criticised by his French counterpart, who said that politicians should respect the independence of the ECB.

The European Central Bank decided in March 2016 to reduce interest rates (which are the base for the calculation of interest on loans in the eurozone) to zero, and also to expand the scope of buying up treasury bonds, and thus offer support to the public finances of those eurozone member states which have problems with indebtedness.

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