Pro Perspectives 11/21/19

November 21, 2019

The ECB restarted its QE program this month.  The plan is to buy 20 billion euros worth of bonds, indefinitely. 

To refresh your memory, it was just December of last year that the ECB quit the three-year QE program that more than doubled the size of the their balance sheet.

But unlike QE in the U.S., the ECB’s program didn’t do much for European stocks.

With that, we’ve talked about the prospects of seeing the ECB add stocks to the mix in their asset purchase program, in effort to drive investment, and ultimately demand.  The BOJ has done it, with some success (at least for the Nikkei).

Remember, ECB govenor Ollie Rehn said back in August that the ECB should ‘overshoot, rather than undershoot’ on this next iteration of QE.  And he didn’t rule out a plan to outright buy stocks.  On that note, we’ll hear from the ECB again on December 12th, led by their new President (Christine Lagarde).

In the meantime, nothing has been better for global stability that the Fed’s new “don’t call it QE” program.  They’ve bought more than a quarter-trillion-dollars worth of Treasury bills since August, returning the aggregate balance sheet of the big three central banks (the Fed, ECB and BOJ) back to record high levels.