Central banks are on the losing side of government pacts

A thumbs-down

Markets toasted European Central Bank (ECB) president Mario Draghi’s much anticipated announcement on January 22 that he was pressing ahead with a European government-bond buying programme. This will result in the Eurosystem (the national central banks of the eurozone plus the ECB) purchasing a combination of public and private assets worth €60 billion ($68 billion) a month until September 2016.

Officially, the Eurosystem’s actions can now be termed ‘quantitative easing’ (QE) rather than

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