Is The Worst Over?

The evidence is not unshakable. But slowly, bumpily, Japan and Europe appear ready to lift upward from the depths of recession.

THE SIGNS ARE TENTATIVE; THE EVIdence is sometimes shaky. But finally a consensus is building that the ailing economies of Europe and Japan may be limping, slowly and painfully, toward recovery after years of recession. The balloon of prosperity is not fully off the ground, but hopes are lifting.

That is good news for the entire world. Even with the U.S. well into its recovery, the slump in Japan and Europe has dragged down the global economy, hurting demand for raw materials and other export goods from developing countries. But last month the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (O.E.C.D.) reported...

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