International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Christine Lagarde, right, and European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi, left, speak prior to G20 Finance Ministers' and Central Bank Governors' Meeting Saturday, June 8, 2019, in Fukuoka, western Japan. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko, Pool)

European Central Bank: ready to give more stimulus if needed

June 18, 2019 - 1:54 am

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — European Central Bank President Mario Draghi says that the eurozone's monetary authority stands ready to cut interest rates and could re-start its bond purchase stimulus program if the economy needs it.

Draghi said in a speech Tuesday at a conference in Sintra, Portugal, that "further cuts in policy rates... remain part of our tools. "

He added that there was "considerable headroom" to re-start bond purchases.

Eurozone inflation of 1.2% is below the bank's goal of just under 2% considered best for the economy, while growth prospects are under pressure from global trade disputes.

Draghi said that in the absence of stronger inflation "additional stimulus will be required" and that the bank would "use all the flexibility in our mandate" to push inflation toward the goal.