ECB holds rates steady

GERMANY - The European Central Bank's governing council decided on Thursday to leave the eurozone's benchmark interest rate unchanged at 3.25 per cent.

Financial markets had widely expected the ECB to hold off on rate rises. Analysts said the Bank had responded to weak share prices and disappointing surveys of economic activity.

Although the central bank has recently stepped up in anti-inflation rhetoric, the sharp rise in the euro's value against the dollar has given the ECB a breathing space,