ECB's Nowotny says markets overinterpreted him on deposit rate

BRATISLAVA (Reuters) - European Central Bank policymaker Ewald Nowotny said he was astonished by the market reaction to his comment earlier on Friday that the possibility of the ECB cutting its deposit rate below zero is not relevant for now.

The euro rose to a session high against the dollar after those remarks, but fell back after the latest comments.

"I was a bit astonished by the reaction of the markets to my comments concerning the deposit facility," Nowotny later told reporters in Bratislava.

"What I wanted to make very clear is: yes, there has been of course a discussion about going into negative territory and we are open minded about it but it is nothing that has immediate effect," he said.

"That is what I really meant," he added. "Not that it is something that has to be excluded in principle. It is just an ongoing discussion. We are open minded about it but it is not something that will lead to a short-term result."

"I felt overinterpreted by the markets," the Austrian National Bank head said.

(Reporting by Jan Lopatka, writing by Paul Carrel)