Lagarde says 2022 hike unlikely but ECB will act if needed

European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde called the prospect of an interest-rate increase next year unlikely, but said she'd quickly take action to combat elevated inflation should it become necessary.

Christine Lagarde, president of the European Central Bank, addresses the European Parliament in Brussels on Feb. 8, 2021. Foto: Bloomberg photo by Thierry Monasse

"When the conditions of our forward guidance are satisfied, we will not hesitate to act," Lagarde told Reuters in a webcast interview on Friday.

Her remarks come just days after data showed euro-area consumer prices shot up 4.9% in November -- the fastest rate since the common currency was created -- and jumped quicker still to 6% in inflation-averse Germany...

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