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As a result, in January 2015 the Governing Council decided to launch an expanded asset purchase programme.
At a time of weak domestic inflationary pressures, the steep drop in oil prices from mid-2014 onwards caused inflation to weaken further.
These monetary transactions made it possible to intervene, if needed, in secondary sovereign debt markets in the event of a speculative attack, notably one linked to single currency fears.
The crisis showed us that we need more coherent economic policies and a stronger institutional foundation for the euro area.This transparency allowed us to keep short-term interest rates in the euro area low and stable, which suited conditions in the euro area, despite the pressures seen on international capital markets.However, the lack of confidence in certain Member States in the financial system and in the solvency of sovereign borrowers was an impediment to the transmission of monetary policy to the broader economy during the crisis.Moreover, an extended period of excessively weak inflation can affect inflation expectations and thereby become self-perpetuating. Thus, we decided to expand our asset purchase programme.The combined purchases of public and private sector debt will amount to €60 billion per month.