ECB leaves benchmark rate unchanged

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By DAVID McHUGH, Associated Press

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The European Central Bank has left its benchmark interest rate unchanged as it pushes eurozone governments to take stronger action to tackle their government debt crisis.

The decision Wednesday by the bank's 23-member governing council left the refinancing rate at a record low 1 percent.

The bank is under pressure to stimulate a weakening eurozone economy with a rate cut. But bank President Mario Draghi has said the central bank cannot make up for inaction by governments.

Analysts say the bank is now likely to see what European leaders can come up with at a June 28-29 summit. This could include moves toward stronger oversight of banks, help for Spain and its troubled banks, or proposals for more growth or shared government borrowing.

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