ECB's Praet says stimulus could 'fall on barren ground' if governments don't cut red tape

MarketsAssociated Press

A top European Central Bank official says the bank's new 1.1 trillion euro ($1.2 trillion) monetary stimulus could "fall on barren ground" if governments do not cut red tape and excessive regulation.

ECB executive board member Peter Praet said in the text of a speech in London on Thursday that "perhaps the biggest risk" to the success of the stimulus would be governments "not doing enough to raise confidence in the future."

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The ECB announced the stimulus Jan. 22 in an effort to raise growth and an alarmingly low rate of inflation. Prices in the 19-country euro currency union fell 0.6 percent in January.

The bank will start purchasing government bonds with newly printed money next month.