In December's monthly bulletin, and as we are used to from the ECB, we end 2010 with a reiterated pledge from the central bank to support the recovery, stimulate growth and keep inflation anchored!

The bulletin reiterated Trichet's press conference and brought nothing new to the market. On December 02 the governing council decided to keep rates steady at 1.00% and also unanimously agreed to continue conducting its main refinancing operations (MROs) and the special-term refinancing operations with a maturity of one maintenance period as fixed rate tender procedures with full allotment for as long as necessary, and at least until the end of the third maintenance period of 2011 on 12 April 2011.

Also, they decided to carry out the three-month longer-term refinancing operations (LTROs) to be allotted on 26 January, 23 February and 30 March 2011 as fixed rate tender procedures with full allotment. The rates in these three-month operations will be fixed at the average rate of the MROs over the life of the respective LTRO.

According to the ECB Bulletin, the Governing Council's monetary policy stance remains accommodative. They added that their stance, the provision of liquidity and the allotment modes will be adjusted as appropriate, taking into account the fact that all the non-standard measures taken during the period of acute financial market tensions are, by construction, temporary in nature.

In conclusion the Governing Council will continue to monitor all developments over the period ahead very closely.

The Council sees that recent data confirms the positive underlying momentum, and that the data reflect the December 2010 Eurosystem staff macroeconomic projections for the area. They see annual real GDP growth will range between 1.6% and 1.8% in 2010, between 0.7% and 2.1% in 2011 and between 0.6% and 2.8% in 2012. Compared with the September 2010 ECB staff macroeconomic projections, the range for 2010 has narrowed somewhat and shifted towards the upper end of September's range, while the range for 2011 is slightly narrower.