Since the start of the global financial crisis, the European Central Bank (ECB) has faced exceptional challenges in fulfilling its price stability mandate, marking the start of a new era of monetary policymaking for the eurozone. This paper reviews the ECB's evolving response from mid-2007 to early-2015, showing how it combined the standard tool of adjusting its policy interest rates with nonstandard passive and active balance-sheet measures, accompanied by a forward guidance of its intended monetary stance. Altogether, the ECB stayed focused on price stability while fulfilling the two classical roles of lender of last resort to resolve money market tensions and market maker of last resort to repair monetary transmission. Addressing the many challenges was complicated by the nexus between fragile banks and vulnerable governments, the ensuing financial fragmentation and the complex institutional and political structure of the eurozone. Looking ahead, the new reinforced European financial architecture could make the ECB's monetary policy task of maintaining price stability for the eurozone easier to accomplish.
- Eurozone crisis
- financial fragmentation
- unconventional monetary policy
- financial stability