ECB’s de Guindos catches COVID-19 before policy meeting – Community News

ECB’s de Guindos catches COVID-19 before policy meeting

FRANKFURT, Dec. 12 (Reuters) – European Central Bank vice president Luis de Guindos has tested positive for COVID-19 and is self-isolating, the ECB said Sunday, days before a policy meeting.

The ECB is set to decide the future of its bond-buying programs at a meeting on Thursday, amid concerns about exceptionally high inflation and rising coronavirus cases in Europe.

The ECB said in a statement that 61-year-old De Guindos tested positive on Saturday, but his symptoms were “very mild” and his illness would “have no impact” on the policy meeting.

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A spokesman said De Guindos planned to participate in Thursday’s meeting, which was already due to take place given the high infection rate in Germany.

“The vice president has already been double vaccinated and his symptoms are very mild,” the ECB said in the statement. “He will be working from home until further notice, and there will be no impact on this week’s monetary policy meeting by the ECB.”

It added that de Guindos had not had close contact with President Christine Lagarde in the past week.

Sources told Reuters last week that ECB policymakers are targeting a temporary, small bond boost to their regular bond purchases to smooth out the end of a much larger contingency plan launched at the end of the pandemic. read more

De Guindos, a centrist on the Governing Council, has said the ECB’s Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program would end in March, as planned, but that the older, smaller asset purchase program would run until the end of the year. .

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Reporting by Francesco Canepa; edit by Barbara Lewis

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