Buck stops here

20.06.15: THE EURO and the American dollar are to amalgamate ­ though England will still run sterling and the euro side by side.

After 15 years during which the euro has come to challenge the supremacy of the dollar, the White House said: "The time has now come to forge a new partnership with our European cousins."

The European Union said it was "a dramatic vote of confidence in a currency that remains a baby on the international scene". Analysts said the agreement would cause a wave of merger activity between US and European companies.

The meetings to join the two currencies took place at Bretton Woods, the New Jersey resort famous for the 1944 meeting that set the post-war economic order.

The English government was not represented at the meetings, but was said to be watching developments. "We will join when the time is ripe," a Downing Street spokesman said.

Despite triumphal statements, analysts believe the move was forced by the emergence of China as the world's next economic superpower, and that the yuan will soon dwarf the euro-dollar. DS