EU's Rehn welcomes ECB's rates forward guidance

AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France Sun Jul 7, 2013 3:34am EDT

European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn attends a news conference at the European Commision in Brussels June 5, 2013. REUTERS/Laurent Dubrule

European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn attends a news conference at the European Commision in Brussels June 5, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Laurent Dubrule

AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France (Reuters) - The EU's top economic official welcomed on Sunday guidance by the European Central Bank on low interest rates in the euro zone, saying the move was needed to preserve the recovery of the bloc's economy.

The ECB on Thursday responded to turbulence caused by the U.S. Federal Reserve's planned withdrawal of monetary stimulus by abandoning its own insistence that it never offers forward guidance on policy.

"This means, in my view, a justified divergence with the U.S. action due to different economic cycles," Olli Rehn told an economists' conference in Aix-en-Provence, southern France.

"While the orientation of economic policies in the United States could become more restrictive, it remains more accommodating in the euro zone with good reason," Rehn added.

(Reporting by Ingrid Melander and Elena Berton; editing by Michel Rose)

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