Europe

ECB leaves interest rates, stimulus program unchanged

  • New vehicles of carmaker Hyundai are lined up at a logistic park in Kehlheim, near Regensburg, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

    New vehicles of carmaker Hyundai are lined up at a logistic park in Kehlheim, near Regensburg, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)  (The Associated Press)

  • President of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi waits for the beginning of a news conference after a meeting of the governing council in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

    President of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi waits for the beginning of a news conference after a meeting of the governing council in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)  (The Associated Press)

  • The left eye of the President of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi is seen prior to a news conference after a meeting of the governing council in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)

    The left eye of the President of the European Central Bank Mario Draghi is seen prior to a news conference after a meeting of the governing council in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)  (The Associated Press)

The European Central Bank has left its key interest rates and stimulus programs untouched, with President Mario Draghi due to explain Thursday why the bank is keeping its measures in place despite improved inflation and growth.

Draghi is expected to use his news conference Thursday to underline the bank's determination to stick with its December decision to keep pumping newly printed money into the economy at least through the end of the year.

The program aims to boost inflation from low levels and support an economy that's slowly gathering steam.

Annual inflation in the 19-country eurozone jumped to 1.1 percent in December from 0.6 percent the month before. But core inflation, which excludes volatile fuel and food, has been stuck at 0.8-0.9 percent, and wages are not growing as quickly.