European shares rally on ECB Draghi's comments

jueves 6 de noviembre de 2014 10:21 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 pares early losses, turns 0.8 pct higher

By Blaise Robinson and Sudip Kar-Gupta

PARIS/LONDON Nov 6 (Reuters) - European shares pared losses and rallied in afternoon trading on Thursday after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said the bank's governing council was unanimous in its commitment to using additional unconventional measures, if needed.

Draghi said the ECB aims to increase the size of its balance sheet towards the levels of 2012, repeating language that had annoyed some policymakers by essentially setting a target for the expansion.

"He's still suggesting that QE is on the table," said Hantec Markets analyst Richard Perry.

Earlier this week, sources told Reuters national central bankers in the euro area planned to challenge Draghi over what they see as his secretive management style and erratic communication and will urge him to act more collegially.

The bankers are particularly angered that Draghi effectively set a target for increasing the ECB's balance sheet immediately after the policy-making governing council explicitly agreed not to make any figure public, the sources said.

At 1400 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 0.8 percent at 1,359.66 points. The benchmark index was down 0.4 percent before the start of Draghi's press briefing.

Weak economic data over the past few months have knocked back European stock markets from peak levels reached earlier in the year, putting pressure on the ECB to unveil fresh measures to support growth.   Continuación...