WASHINGTON, March 22 The European Central Bank
won't tie interest-rate policy to specific economic milestones,
an approach the U.S. Federal Reserve used for just over a year
and abandoned this week, a top policymaker said on Saturday.
"We think it would not be useful," ECB Vice President Vitor
Constancio said on Saturday, without elaborating. He dismissed
the idea of giving a time frame for the bank could raise rates,
saying the idea is "even worse" than thresholds.
The ECB has other tools, including rate cuts, quantitative
easing, negative deposit facility rates and targeted liquidity
provision operations, if further policy accommodation is needed,
At its March policy meeting, the ECB left interest rates on
hold and introduced no other measures to bolster the fragile
euro zone recovery, despite forecasting low inflation for years
Constancio, speaking at a conference sponsored by the Fed,
that markets mostly missed that the ECB actually strengthened
its forward guidance in its recent meeting, tying its
accommodative stance to the closure of slack in the economy.
(Reporting by Ann Saphir)