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(Reuters) - The European Central Bank will not raise its deposit rate until next year at the earliest, according to more than three-quarters of euro money market traders polled by Reuters.
Recent better-than-expected economic data from the euro zone has fuelled market speculation the ECB might move away from its ultra-easy monetary policy and raise interest rates as a first move.
But comments from three of the central bank's top policymakers last week suggested it will not deviate from its current policy plan, including record-low rates and monthly asset purchases, until inflation picks up and the economy is on a healthy growth path.
Asked when the ECB will raise its deposit rate, currently -0.40 percent, eight of 18 traders said next year, five said in 2019 and one said in 2020. The remaining four respondents said the ECB could move as early as this year.
A regular survey of 22 traders showed banks are expected to borrow 13.0 billion euros ($13.8 billion) at the ECB's weekly refinancing operation, a touch less than the 13.2 billion euros maturing from last week.
ECB WEBSITE www.ecb.int
Reporting by Shrutee Sarkar; Polling by Vartika Sahu; editing by John Stonestreet