Has Europe's Growth Peaked?

A slowdown could mean trouble for American exporters

Like a team of climbers nearing the top of a steep and dangerous mountain face, Western Europe's economies are beginning to show signs of fatigue. Though still pressing onward and upward, they face perilous obstacles, most notably the weak dollar. While Britain, Italy and Spain are still moving forward at a relatively brisk rate, such countries as West Germany, France and Sweden are faltering. And just as climbers roped together for safety can progress only at the pace of the slowest team member, growth is now being threatened by the economic laggards.

Such was the picture that emerged from a meeting...