ECB chief econ says low inflation may become 'persistent'

Peter Praet says central bank will continue to act 'forcefully'

(ANSA) - Rome, April 4 - European Central Bank (ECB) chief economist Peter Praet said that low inflation in the eurozone could become a persistent problem, speaking at Rome's LUISS University on Monday. "What started as a temporary period of low inflation could become persistent," Praet said.
    He said the ECB would continue to react "forcefully" in the future if necessary against the risk of persistent low inflation.
    News that the ECB intends to continue its support for the eurozone's financial recovery helped European stock markets on Monday.
    At midday, Paris was up 1.1%, Frankfurt was up 1%, London was up 0.7% and Milan was up 0.6%.
    On the Milan Stock Exchange, some banks saw jumps in their share prices: Mediobanca was up 2.95%, BPER was up 2.82%, and Unipol was up 2.62%.
    Others suffered, including Banco Popolare, down 2.5%; BPM, down 2.24%; and MPS, down 2.16%.


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