Mr Praet spoke about how, after several quarters of higher than expected growth, the latest euro area data pointed towards some moderation, but remains consistent with a solid and broad-based economic expansion.

He then went on to discuss how monetary policy measures introduced since 2014 have been central in supporting euro area growth and paving the way for a return of euro area inflation to a rate below, but close to, 2% over the medium term. Inflation developments, however, remain subdued. He concluded that, overall, an ample degree of monetary stimulus remains necessary for underlying inflation pressures to continue to build up and support headline inflation developments over the medium term.