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European Central Bank buys euro14.3 billion in bonds
ECB buys euro14.3 bln ($20.6 bln) worth of bonds in second week of propping up Italy and Spain
By The Associated Press

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) ' The European Central Bank says it spent euro14.3 billion ($20.6 billion) last week buying government bonds to keep the eurozone's debt crisis at bay.

The amount disclosed on Monday was short of the previous week's figure of euro22 billion ($32 billion) but close to market expectations.

Buying Italian and Spanish bonds on financial markets has driven down borrowing rates that were threatening those two countries with financial ruin.

European officials want the eurozone's bailout fund to take over the purchases, but national parliaments will not give their approval to that move until this fall.

That has left the central bank with the main burden of fighting off market turmoil.

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