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Minimum reserves

The ECB requires credit institutions established in the euro area to hold minimum reserves on accounts with their national central banks (NCBs). The intent of the minimum reserve system is to pursue the aims of stabilising money market interest rates and creating (or enlarging) a structural liquidity shortage. The reserve requirement of each institution is determined in relation to elements of its balance sheet. In order to pursue the aim of stabilising interest rates, the Eurosystem’s minimum reserve system enables institutions to make use of averaging provisions. This implies that compliance with the reserve requirement is determined on the basis of the institutions’ average daily reserve holdings over reserve maintenance periods. The required reserve holdings are remunerated at a level corresponding to the average interest rate over the maintenance period of the Eurosystem’s main refinancing operations. Excess reserves are remunerated in accordance with Decision (EU) 2019/1743 of the European Central Bank of 15 October 2019 (ECB/2019/31).