Since the global finance market crisis of 2007 the European Central Bank has implemented a number of extraordinary steps to expand liquidity. The Bank’s objective has been to reduce uncertainty in the interbank market and to stimulate stagnant bank lending to the real economy in the Eurozone. With the help of a TVP VAR model the author examines how the effect of Central Bank liquidity on European lending volumes has changed over time. The financial crisis disrupted the normal transmission mechanism for the credit volume of private households, companies and banks, and in its aftermath normal transmission was only resumed for the volume of bank lending. At present, an expansion of the Central Bank’s balance sheets is particularly stimulating the interbank market but is having no direct influence on the volume of borrowing in the real economy. Nevertheless, there may yet be a delayed transmission with a positive effect on the volume of private-sector lending.
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