Asia stocks mixed after unprecedented ECB actions

Asian stocks are mixed after the European Central Bank (ECB) announcement saw it cut the deposit rate for banks to zero from -0.1 per cent; and reduce the benchmark interest rate to 0.15 per cent from 0.25 per cent.

The ECB is the first major central bank to introduce negative interest rates, which will see it become cheaper for banks to lend money to businesses.

The ECB will offer a package of cheap long-term loans to banks which are worth up to 400bn euros (£325bn).

Hong Kong, Australian and Japan stocks initially rose in reaction to the news, but subsequently gave up their gains in later trade.

This was despite a strong rally on Wall Street.

The S&P 500 and Dow Industrial Average closed at new record highs on Thursday on the new stimulus measures out of Europe.

European stock markets and the euro currency also logged gains on Thursday.

Mario Draghi, the ECB President, indicated there may be more easing measures to come.

“Are we finished? The answer is no,” he said in response to a question about the potential for more stimulus.