FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The European Central Bank said Sunday it was ready to implement its SMP bond-buying program, a move financial markets had been looking for as a possible way to prevent the euro zone debt crisis from widening.
In a statement, the ECB said it welcomed announcements by Spain and Italy — countries now at the center of the debt crisis — on new fiscal and structural policy measures, and it urged both governments to roll them out swiftly.
The Frankfurt-based central bank added that it “will actively implement its Securities Markets Program.”
“This program has been designed to help restore a better transmission of our monetary policy decisions — taking account of dysfunctional market segments — and therefore to ensure price stability in the euro area.
Reporting by Paul Carrel; Editing by Andrew Heavens