December 8, 2011 / 2:06 PM / in 6 years

ECB's Draghi says misinterpreted on bond buying

FRANKFURT, Dec 8 (Reuters) - European Central Bank President Mario Draghi on Thursday questioned the interpretation of his comments last week on a fiscal compact, taken by some as being a hint the bank could commit to more bond buying if European leaders tighten budget rules.

“I was surprised by the implicit meaning that was given (to my comments last week,” Draghi told a news conference after the ECB cut interest rates to 1.0 percent.

Some reports last week said Draghi had hinted that the bank could take stronger action - maybe by buying euro zone government bonds more aggressively - if European leaders agree on tighter budget controls at a summit starting later.

Earlier this week ratings agency S&P warned that its threat of a mass downgrade of euro zone members would be tough to avoid if larger ECB bond buying was not part of Friday’s summit deal.

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