The European Central Bank may need some time before the recently agreed acceleration in the pace of money printing becomes apparent, ECB President Christine Lagarde said today. 

The move is part of the ECB's efforts to cushion the fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Investors have been scrutinising the ECB's weekly purchase data for evidence of its effort to stem a rise in borrowing costs on bond markets, largely driven by higher inflation expectations in the US. 

The ECB agreed last week to "significantly" increase its bond purchases to hold yields down, but Lagarde said it will be a while before this move shows up in the weekly bond-buying figures. 

"While records of our weekly purchases will continue to be distorted by short-term noisy factors - such as occasionally lumpy redemptions - the step-up in the run-rate of our programme will become visible when ascertained over longer time intervals," Christine Lagarde said in a speech. 

Market concerns were likely to become even more pressing after the US Federal Reserve increased its growth and inflation expectations yesterday while guiding for no interest rate hikes until 2024. 

That pushed up yields on long-term US Treasuries, which dragged up euro zone borrowing costs in their wake. 

Ms Lagarde simply repeated the bank's policy message, including its guidance on growth and bond yields. 

"If sizeable and persistent, increases in those market interest rates, when left unchecked, may become inconsistent with countering the downward impact of the pandemic on the projected path of inflation," she told the European Parliament's committee on economic and monetary affairs.