I'm translating an article about finance. Can you help me explain what "deposit facility" means in this context?

In December, the euro zone central bank decreased the rate on its deposit facility by a further 10 basis points to minus-0.3 percent and extended its asset-purchase program until March 2017 at the earliest.

By the way, does it mean that we have to pay money to have "something (= deposit facility)" kept (because the rate is -0.3%)?

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    This is British English. It is a facility that accepts deposits, i.e. bank. And yes, negative interests rates incur fees to the depositor. – lurker Dec 31 '15 at 4:27
  • @lurker: does it mean "overnight deposit"? – haile Dec 31 '15 at 4:31
  • Yes, this is all part of the Overnight Market. – lurker Dec 31 '15 at 4:33
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    Worth saying that in the context of financial services, "deposit facility" is probably not a physical bank, it's a service provided by the ECB. This is not standard English, and is only used in this specialised field. – hugh Jan 13 '16 at 12:26
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    @hugh is absolutely right, this is finance jargon and such terms often have official definitions (e.g. for regulatory purposes). Sometimes an official definitions are counterintuitive or even contrary to the ordinary meaning of the words, which is a potential pitfall for nonnative speakers. Just something to keep in mind. – Era Jan 13 '16 at 19:52

In banking, a deposit facility is the ability to give the bank your money to look after. A central bank puts negative interest on deposit facilities to discourage people (or in this case, banks and major business entities) from sitting on their money.

In a consumer deposit account, if your balance is positive then it grows. With a central bank, when they want to increase liquidity (the flow of money in the economy), if your balance is positive then it shrinks.

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