Since January, the euro has gained more than 8 percent against the dollar, reaching $0.99 on Friday. A stronger euro has made goods and services more expensive for Americans travelling in Europe this summer. But the shift should help US firms competing in Europe. A weaker dollar tends to make their products less expensive abroad.
The euro, which went into circulation at the start of this year, first began trading Jan. 4, 1999, hitting a high of $1.19 on that same day. But the currency, used in 12 European nations, fell to an all-time low of $0.82 in October 2000.