Category Archives: ECB balance sheet

27/12/18: Mr. Draghi’s Santa: Ending QE, Frankfurt Style


It's Christmas time, and - Merry / Happy Christmas to all reading the blog - Mr. Draghi is intent on delivering a handful of new presents for the kids. Ho-Ho-Ho... folks:


The ECB balancesheet has just hit a new high of 42% of Eurozone GDP, up from 39.7% at the end of 3Q 2018. Although the ECB has announced its termination of new purchases of assets under the QE, starting in January 2019, the bank has continued buying assets in December, and it will continue replacing maturing debt it holds into some years to come.

Despite the decline in the Euro value, expressed in dollar terms, ECB's balancesheet is the largest of the G3 Central Banks, ahead of both the Fed and the BOJ.

Ho-Ho-Ho... folks. The party is still going on, although the guests are too drunk to walk. Meanwhile, global liquidity has been stagnant on-trend since the start of 2015.


And now the white powder of debt is no longer sufficient to prop up the punters off the dance floor:


Ho-Ho-Ho... folks.

27/12/18: Mr. Draghi’s Santa: Ending QE, Frankfurt Style


It's Christmas time, and - Merry / Happy Christmas to all reading the blog - Mr. Draghi is intent on delivering a handful of new presents for the kids. Ho-Ho-Ho... folks:


The ECB balancesheet has just hit a new high of 42% of Eurozone GDP, up from 39.7% at the end of 3Q 2018. Although the ECB has announced its termination of new purchases of assets under the QE, starting in January 2019, the bank has continued buying assets in December, and it will continue replacing maturing debt it holds into some years to come.

Despite the decline in the Euro value, expressed in dollar terms, ECB's balancesheet is the largest of the G3 Central Banks, ahead of both the Fed and the BOJ.

Ho-Ho-Ho... folks. The party is still going on, although the guests are too drunk to walk. Meanwhile, global liquidity has been stagnant on-trend since the start of 2015.


And now the white powder of debt is no longer sufficient to prop up the punters off the dance floor:


Ho-Ho-Ho... folks.

21/11/17: ECB loads up on pre-Christmas sales of junk


Holger Zschaepitz @Schuldensuehner posted earlier today the latest data on ECB’s balance sheet. Despite focusing its attention on unwinding the QE in the medium term future, Frankfurt continues to ramp up its purchases of euro area debt. Amidst booming euro area economic growth, total assets held by the ECB rose by another €24.1 billion in October, hitting a fresh life-time high of €4.4119 trillion.


Thus, currently, ECB balance sheet amounts to 40.9% of Eurozone GDP. The ‘market economy’ of neoliberal euro area is now increasingly looking more and more like some sort of a corporatist paradise. On top of ECB holdings, euro area government expenditures this year are running at around 47.47% of GDP, accord to the IMF, while Government debt levels are at 87.37% of GDP. General government net borrowing stands at 1.276% of GDP, while, thanks to the ECB buying up government debt, primary net balance is in surplus of 0.589% of GDP.

Meanwhile, based on UBS analysis, the ECB is increasingly resorting to buying up ‘bad’ corporate debt. So far, the ECB has swallowed some 255 issues of BB-rated and non-rated corporate bonds, with Frankfurt’s largest corporate debt exposures rated at BBB+. AA to A-rated bonds count 339 issues, with mode at A- (148 issues).


It would be interesting to see the breakdown by volume and issuer names, as ECB’s corporate debt purchasing programme is hardly a very transparent undertaking.

All in, there is absolutely no doubt that Frankfurt is heavily subsidising both sovereign and corporate debt markets in Europe, largely irrespective of risks and adverse incentives such subsidies may carry.