The economy in the Eurozone is struggling at present and has been for some time now. Consistently low inflation has significantly increased the risks of deflation in the region. In response to this the European Central Bank (ECB) has taken unprecedented action by cutting interest rate to negative levels, and then dropping them again. On top of this the ECB has introduced quantitative easing (QE) to combat the economic risks of deflation and announced in their meeting last week that they are now preparing to increase these measures.
Notwithstanding the other effects that this action is likely to have, of which there are many, we believe that that this increase in QE in Europe will have a highly bullish effect on the European equities markets. The first reason for this is that the ECB’s QE has so far been, and is very likely to continue to be, targeted towards actually stimulating growth in the economy, in a similar way to QE3 in the US, rather than broad based actions that pumped money into the system to avoid a collapse as QE1 and QE2 did. This means the ECB’s new measures are likely to stimulate growth over the long term.