ECB annual report strikes hopeful note at end of rough year

ECB governing council

The European Central Bank (ECB) yesterday published its annual report for 2012, recording a difficult year for the eurozone but also highlighting a number of policy successes.

Introducing the report, ECB president Mario Draghi noted "unfavourable" growth of –0.5% over the year, accelerating to –0.9% by the year end. Inflation meanwhile averaged 2.5%, above the ECB's 2% target but a slight reduction from 2011's 2.7%.

The sovereign debt crisis worsened in mid-2012, but Draghi said policy measures

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