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A proposal by European Central Bank chief economist Philip Lane to increase the pace of its Pandemic Emergency Purchase Programme "significantly" was only agreed by Governing Council members on the understanding that its overall size was not being called into question and that the pace could be reduced in future, the official account of March's monetary policy meeting shows.
Members "generally" agree with the baseline view for economic growth in the March staff projections, which was broadly unchanged from December. The Council also agreed to conduct a quarterly joint assessment to determine the pace of purchases needed to keep financing conditions favourable.
Members disagreed emerged over the effect on expectations of an expected temporary increase in inflation to around 2% later in 2021, and over the extent to which March's upward revision to 2021's headline inflation projection was attributable to temporary factors. Council members also diverged on the likely impact of the unleashing of pent-up demand on Europe's economy, with particular reference made to regional variations in potential consumer spending versus increased debt vulnerability.