Market Extra: Investors brace for ECB ‘close call’ on when to start winding down quantitative easing

The European Central Bank will be in the spotlight Thursday as it weighs whether to outline plans for winding down its bond-buying program, the centerpiece of its quantitative-easing strategy.

“It is unclear whether the ECB will announce a taper at this meeting or next — we simply cannot know,” said Renuka Fernandez, rates strategist at Nomura, in a Tuesday note.

Thanks to the level of anticipation surrounding the slow-motion machinations, which would presumably be laid out in detail by ECB President Mario Draghi in his news conference following the policy meeting in Riga, Latvia (the Frankfurt-headquartered central bank occasionally holds policy meetings in other eurozone cities), financial markets might be prone to outsize moves, analysts said.

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