Living: Bullish About the Buck

Every American tourist planning a summer swing through Europe or a fall trek through the Himalayas has to be anxious about one thing: the value of the dollar. Many booked the trip of a lifetime because the dollar was so strong, and they are afraid that the great bargain might turn into a budget buster.

In recent years the American currency has been on a joyride on world money markets. During the late '70s, foreign-exchange traders nicknamed the dollar "the downhill racer" because it was slipping and sliding so fast. Since 1980, however, it has been on a march upward. The...

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