The decision appears to have been spurred by the prolonged trade dispute between the United States and China. And the Fed sits, and sits, and sits.
The ECB also said it was re-starting quantitative easing.
Eurozone growth slumped to 0.2% in the second quarter of 2019, from 0.4% in the first three months of the year, while some economies, including Italy and Germany, have come close to the brink of recession in recent months.
Seven years ago, in the very midst of the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis, Mario Draghi promised to do "whatever it takes" to preserve the euro.
That is a penalty rate that pushes banks to lend excess cash, but was a smaller cut than the market was hoping for.
Draghi said that eurozone countries with solid public finances should increase their spending to reboot economic growth, after years of monetary policy support from the central bank.
The euro dropped by 0.8% to 1.093 against the Dollars. The euro gained and sovereign bonds were mixed. The single currency itself firmed a touch after wild price swings during Draghi's news conference.
To offset that burden, the European Central Bank promised even cheaper long-term funding and said it would introduce a multi-tier deposit rate to shield them from some of the charge.
Uncushioned negative rates had so far cost eurozone lenders around €7 billion per year.
Yet the size and design of the scheme underwhelmed bankers whose own loans are being offered at rock-bottom rates.
In critical comments less than an hour after the ECB decision, Trump used a tweet to attack the Fed for its lack of action: "European Central Bank, acting quickly, Cuts Rates 10 Basis Points".
Euro zone stocks were little changed on Thursday, however, highlighting investors' doubts about the effectiveness of European Central Bank policy, which can only prop up domestic confidence, not deliver a U.S.
Indeed, Draghi stepped up his rhetoric in calling for governments to spend their way out of a slowdown, singling out Germany, which is obsessed with running a balanced budget. "There was unanimity, namely that fiscal policy should become the main instrument".
Economists polled by Reuters expected a 10 basis point deposit rate cut, a tiered deposit rate to support banks, bond buys of 30 billion euros a month from October and a fresh promise to keep rates low for longer.
"The key risk is that rate cuts could even backfire".
The euro on Thursday fell against the U.S. dollar (EURUSD=X) - hitting a two-year low in large part because looser monetary policy typically devalues a currency.