Money markets us rates futures briefly turn positive

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NEW YORK Jan 22 Short-term U.S. interest rates futures rose briefly early Thursday after the European Central Bank outlined a bond purchase program worth 60 billion euros a month to help stimulate spending and investments in a bid to avert deflation. The ECB plan will start in March and run until the end of September 2016. Shortly after the ECB's stimulus move, the Danish central bank cut its key policy rate for the second time this week to defend its currency peg to the euro. On Wednesday, the Bank of Canada stunned markets when it lowered interest rates by a quarter point to 0.75 percent in an attempt to counter the negative impact from the recent drop in oil prices.

This recent stretch of sometimes surprising policy measures stoked speculation that the Federal Reserve could abandon a possible plan to lift short-term interest rates from near zero percent in 2015, analysts said. In choppy trading, federal funds futures for December delivery touched a session high of 99.57 before turning lower at 99.55, down 1.5 basis points from Wednesday's close.