News Summary: ECB defends bond program

Top ECB official points to risks of killing bond-buying program before German court hearing

Associated Press

A WARNING: European Central Bank executive board member Joerg Asmussen says a German court judgment against the bank's program to buy the bonds of troubled economies could reignite concerns over the future of the euro.

THE HEARING: Germany's Federal Constitutional Court holds a two-day hearing starting Tuesday on the ECB's offer last September to purchase unlimited amounts of government bonds, a policy widely credited for an easing in Europe's debt crisis. It will also consider whether the euro area's rescue fund violates German law.

THE BACKGROUND: The ECB announced the bond buying program last September after bank President Mario Draghi had pledged that the bank was "ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro."

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