FRANKFURT Jan 10 The European Central Bank said
on Thursday that recent economic surveys and indicators had
shown signs of stabilising, suggesting an improved picture later
in the year.
"The economic weakness in the euro area is expected to
extend into 2013," ECB President Mario Draghi said at a news
conference. "Later, in 2013, economic activity should gradually
"Several ... indicators have broadly stabilised, albeit at
low levels and financial market confidence has improved
significantly," he said.
He was speaking after the ECB held its main interest rate at
Draghi reiterated the ECB's view that inflation, which held
at 2.2 percent in December, would fall below 2 percent during
the course of this year. The central bank targets inflation of
below but close to 2 percent.
"Over the policy-relevant horizon, inflationary pressures
should remain contained," Draghi said.