In less than two months, Mario Draghi, Banca d’Italia governor, will be at the helm of the European Central Bank. Will the ECB then become more reluctant to buy government bonds than under Jean-Claude Trichet, the incumbent?
Some might think so after a speech Mr Draghi gave in Paris this morning. He stuck firmly to the agreed ECB script: that the central bank’s controversial bond purchases were strictly temporary and “cannot be used to circumvent the fundemental principle of budgetary discipline; in other words, it should not be taken for granted by member states”. In any case, the ECB would not be deflected from its primary mission of combating inflation, Mr Draghi argued.