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ECB's Lane Signals Interest Rate Cut Amid Wage Growth Concerns

The European Central Bank (ECB) is gearing up for an interest rate cut in the coming month, according to the ECB's chief economist Philip Lane, who shared insights with the Financial Times. Lane indicated that while policy adjustments are on the horizon, the focus remains on maintaining accommodative measures throughout the year, as wage growth isn't anticipated to normalize until 2026.

ECB's Lane Signals Interest Rate Cut Amid Wage Growth Concerns

Lane's remarks suggest a shift in the ECB's approach, with markets now scaling back their expectations for future rate cuts. He emphasized the need for continued policy accommodation, stating, "Barring any big surprises, right now there's enough in what we're seeing to move (lower) the cap." Lane further explained, "The best way to frame the conversation this year is that we need to continue to be restrictive throughout the year. But within the containment zone, we can move down somewhat."

While Lane refrained from commenting on the ECB's July meeting, other policymakers, including Isabel Schnabel, have expressed reservations about a second rate cut happening too soon. Lane highlighted the importance of monitoring wage growth, suggesting that policymakers may consider normalization once there's more significant progress in inflation.

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Lane underscored the necessity of keeping interest rates within a containment zone to prevent inflation from exceeding the ECB's 2% target, which could pose challenges. He acknowledged recent acceleration in a key wage gauge but noted that a slowdown in growth is already in motion. "The slowdown does not necessarily mean an immediate return to steady state," Lane explained. "This year the adjustment is clearly quite gradual."

Overall, Lane's remarks provide insights into the ECB's upcoming monetary policy decisions, emphasizing the need for continued accommodation amid evolving economic conditions. As policymakers navigate uncertainties, including wage growth dynamics, the ECB remains committed to its mandate of price stability while supporting economic recovery in the Eurozone.



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