MONEY: The Floating World

Grim-faced finance and treasury ministers from the West's major industrial nations streamed into Brussels and Paris last week for anxious, endless meetings about the latest monetary crisis. Even as they argued, a solution of sorts seemed to be working itself out. Though official currency exchanges were closed throughout Europe and will stay shut for at least part of this week, private money markets remained open much as usual. But rather than make deals at the official exchange rates, currency traders allowed monetary values to be set by supply and demand. In effect —and without formal government sanction—the world's major currencies...

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