European Central Bank expected to hold steady as economy slows and inflation soars

For some time, central-bank watchers have expected the ECB’s October meeting to be relatively unexciting, but the current mix of slowing growth and higher inflation could render it more eventful than originally anticipated.

Although big decisions on the future of the European Central Bank’s emergency stimulus package — the Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program — are unlikely to be revealed until December, investor interest will be focused on comments made by bank President Christine Lagarde in this Thursday’s press conference.

“We see scope for the ECB to continue its pushback against current market pricing in its communications at the meeting,” Spyros Adreopoulos, senior European economist at BNP Paribas, said in a recent note.

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