German critics of the European Central Bank’s 2.28 trillion-euro bond-buying program got a little bit more ammunition. Inflation in the euro area’s biggest economy was 1.9 percent in January, the highest rate since July 2013. It’s now roughly at the level that the ECB targets for the currency bloc as a whole. Source Bloomberg
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Italy’s plans to bail out two regional banks pose a tough dilemma to European regulators, who are still considering whether Monte dei Paschi qualifies for state aid, three months after giving a preliminary green light. Source Reuters
Catalonia’s regional parliament, which is dominated by parties that want the region to break away from Spain, approved Wednesday a 2017 budget that includes funding for an independence referendum. Source The Local
Catalonia’s separatist government on Sunday again urged Spain’s central government to let it hold a legal referendum on independence like the one Scotland staged in 2014 with London’s approval. Source the Local