WHEW!

ECB Cuts Interest Rates

Daniel Roland/AFP/Getty

While expected, the European Central Bank’s move to cut its main interest rate Thursday comes as a welcome step in the right direction for many analysts. The ECB’s governing council cut the refinancing rate to a new low of 0.5 percent. The change in rate affects over €850 billion in ECB loans. While the ECB had planned on a healthier euro zone by springtime, data coming out this month are likely to show the economy contracting for the sixth straight quarter.