ECB chief hits elusive inflation target in own pay packet

The two percent target was less elusive in Draghi's own pay

As European Central Bank President Mario Draghi battles to bring inflation towards 2.0 percent, the institution's annual report showed Thursday his target was met in at least one place last year -- his pay packet.

Draghi's salary increased to 396,000 euros ($488,211) in 2017, just under 2.0 percent higher than his compensation the previous year, the Frankfurt institution said.

Vice President Vitor Constancio earned 340,200 euros, while other members of the six-person executive board and top banking supervisor Daniele Nouy made 283,488 euros each.

On Draghi's watch, the ECB has intervened massively in the 19-nation eurozone, with tens of billions of euros per month in bond purchases since 2015 and ultra-low interest rates.

The policies have worked as designed to increase lending and economic growth, but have so far yet to produce inflation of "close to, but below 2.0 percent" -- the ECB's definition of price stability.

One reason is that the jobless rate remains high across the single currency area, at 8.7 percent, limiting workers' bargaining power.

With unemployment still widespread, the wage increases Draghi has said are a "linchpin" of boosting price growth remain elusive for most workers.

In 2017, the ECB's overall payroll costs increased 14.6 percent, to 535 million euros.

The central bank said it saw a net increase in staff, with 726 arrivals more than balancing out 443 departures, while payouts to workers reaching the end of their contracts increased compared with 2016.

Some 3,384 people worked at the bank on December 31, 330 of them in management jobs, compared with 3,171 a year before.