ECB loses EUR5.6bn on forex holdings in 2003

The weakness of the dollar has hit the European Central Bank hard in 2003, forcing the bank to declare a loss, and claw back dividend payments from its national central bank shareholders.

The ECB's balance sheet suffered a EUR5.6 billion hit in 2003 mostly as a result of the falling the dollar, according to the ECB's accounts released on Thursday. Lower interest income and the need to cover this loss meant the ECB made an overall loss of €477m for the year and cancelled its dividend.

The ECB's