Book

The euro at ten: the next global currency?

Publishing date
15 June 2009

Over the first ten years of its existence, the euro has proved to be more than a powerful symbol of collective identity. It has provided price stability to previously inflation-prone countries; it has offered a shelter against currency crises; and it has by and large been conducive to budgetary discipline. The eurozone has attracted five new members in addition to the initial eleven, and many countries in Europe wish to adopt it. The euro has also been successful internationally. Even though research presented in this volume confirms that it has not rivaled the dollar's world currency status, it has certainly become a strong regional currency in Europe and the Mediterranean region. Some countries in the region have de facto adopted it, several peg to it, and many have become at least partially euroized.

However, the euro's impressive first decade is likely to be followed by a much more difficult period. The present financial crisis is posing at least two important challenges: real economic adjustment within the euro area and maintenance of fiscal and financial stability without a central government authority capable of taking appropriate financial and fiscal decisions in difficult times.

This book is the product of a joint conference held in 2008 by the Peterson Institute for International Economics and Bruegel. It is edited by Bruegel Director Jean Pisani-Ferry and then-PIEE Deputy Director and current Bruegel board member Adam Posen. The papers and remarks in this volume demonstrate that the euro has proved to be attractive as a fair weather currency for countries and investors well beyond its borders. But it remains to be seen whether it is equipped to also succeed as a stormy weather currency.

Contributors: Joaquín Almunia, Maria Celina Arraes, Leszek Balcerowicz, C. Fred Bergsten, Lorenzo Bini Smaghi, Kristin J. Forbes, Linda S. Goldberg, C. Randall Henning, Mohsin S. Khan, Antonio de Lecea, Erkki Liikanen, Philippe Martin, Thomas Mayer, André Sapir, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Lawrence H. Summers, and György Szapáry.

About the authors

  • Jean Pisani-Ferry

    Jean Pisani-Ferry is a Senior Fellow at Bruegel, the European think tank, and a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute (Washington DC). He is also a professor of economics with Sciences Po (Paris).

    He sits on the supervisory board of the French Caisse des Dépôts and serves as non-executive chair of I4CE, the French institute for climate economics.

    Pisani-Ferry served from 2013 to 2016 as Commissioner-General of France Stratégie, the ideas lab of the French government. In 2017, he contributed to Emmanuel Macron’s presidential bid as the Director of programme and ideas of his campaign. He was from 2005 to 2013 the Founding Director of Bruegel, the Brussels-based economic think tank that he had contributed to create. Beforehand, he was Executive President of the French PM’s Council of Economic Analysis (2001-2002), Senior Economic Adviser to the French Minister of Finance (1997-2000), and Director of CEPII, the French institute for international economics (1992-1997).

    Pisani-Ferry has taught at University Paris-Dauphine, École Polytechnique, École Centrale and the Free University of Brussels. His publications include numerous books and articles on economic policy and European policy issues. He has also been an active contributor to public debates with regular columns in Le Monde and for Project Syndicate.

  • Adam Posen

    Adam S. Posen is the president of the Peterson Institute for International
    Economics.

    Adam Posen is President of the Peterson Institute for International Economics. From 2009-12, during the global financial crisis, he served as an external voting member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, and was a globally recognized advocate of activist macroeconomic policy response to the crisis. He is the author or editor of six books, and has served as a visiting scholar or consultant to central banks throughout Europe, North America, and East Asia. He is in his fifth term as an Economic Advisor to the US Congressional Budget Office. He received his PhD in Political Economy from Harvard University, and has been the recipient of fellowships and major research grants from the European Commission, the Ford Foundation, the Sloan Foundation, and the US National Science Foundation.

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