A magnificent achievement, but still a political liability

The pan-continental currency is now two decades old, and its advocates want deeper European integration to support it. But can an ambitious agenda survive the fraught politics of modern Europe?

9th December, 2018
Jean-Claude Trichet, former president of the European Central Bank, hands over a bell to his successor, Mario Draghi, during a farewell celebration in 2011Ralph Orlowski/Getty

Trust an Italian to use a carnal metaphor to sum up the difficulties facing the euro, without making it sound tacky.

Addressing an audience of political and fiscal A-listers in Brussels last week, Beppe Severgnini, a columnist with the Milanese broadsheet Corriere della Sera, offered this metaphor for the problem Europeans face when trying to get excited about the euro: “It’s like trying to rekindle the sex drive of a middle-aged man by reading to...

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