European Central Bank Acts to Quell Debt Crisis

Posted August 2nd, 2012 at 10:40 am (UTC-5)
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The European Central Bank is taking new action to try to end the financial turmoil in the 17-nation euro currency union.

Bank chief Mario Draghi says the central bank is ready to buy the government bonds of the continent's debtor nations, which could ease the heightened borrowing costs for Spain and Italy. Draghi set no timetable for the debt purchases or the amount, but said they would be substantial enough to stabilize finances in the eurozone.

Analysts have said the eurozone financial turmoil threatens the 13-year-old currency. But Draghi declared, “The euro is irreversible.”

The central bank kept its key benchmark interest rate at a record low of three-quarters of a percent. But the low rate has not boosted the eurozone economy, with several countries in recession and struggling with high unemployment.