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The switch to electronic payments
On January 1, 1999, 11 European countries will officially become a monetary union with one currency, the euro. Forming a monetary union brings benefits, such as increased trade between countries. But it carries costs as well. To join the union, each country must cede its right to set individual monetary and exchange-rate policies. Yet each country?s economic situation may differ from that of its fellow union members. How will these countries--and the union--fare when economic shocks hit, especially shocks that affect one country or region more than another? In this article, Gwen Eudey weighs ...