Time Essay: What's Behind the Dollar Debacle

Five years have now passed since the world's major industrial nations abandoned fixed exchange rates for the dollar, and the warnings of Cassandras that the end result could be global currency chaos seem uncomfortably close to coming true. Scarcely a week goes by without the once mighty greenback reeling from a fresh thrashing on the money markets; and when it does steady, as it did in Europe last week (see ECONOMY & BUSINESS), no one can trust the stability to last. Though the effects of this beating remain of only peripheral concern to most Americans—unless they travel abroad—the dollar's travails are...

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