PARIS (Reuters) - The European Central Bank has no need for now to offer a new round of ultra-cheap long-term loans because liquidity in the banking system is abundant, governing council member Christian Noyer told a newspaper.
Noyer, who is also governor of the Bank of France, told Le Monde the ECB saw no liquidity shortage even though many observers were wondering whether a new long-term refinancing operation (LTRO) was needed.
"But we remain vigilant. If we see there are liquidity tensions that endanger recovery, the ECB will not hesitate to take all appropriate measures, using all appropriate tools," he said according to an interview on Le Monde's website.
ECB President Mario Draghi said after a monetary policy meeting on Wednesday that the central bank stood ready to use any policy tool, including LTROs, to temper money market rates if needed.
Economists polled by Reuters said they expect the ECB to issue another round of long-term loans, possibly by the end of the year. Excess liquidity - the money beyond what the banking system needs to function - is falling as banks repay the LTROs they took from the ECB in late 2011 and early 2012.
Noyer said another LTRO was far from the only way the ECB could influence money markets, where rates have moved higher in recent months on expectations the U.S. Federal Reserve will rein in its monetary stimulus.
Noyer dismissed concerns that the bloc could face a deflationary spiral after euro zone inflation fell to a 3-1/2 year low in September.
"Now that there is a recovery on the horizon, the economic fundamentals should improve and a scenario of deflation seems unlikely to me," Noyer said.
(reporting by Leigh Thomas; editing by Mark John and John Stonestreet)