Germany Cleans Up Its Act

No longer the euro zone's black sheep, the continent's largest economy has wrestled its budget deficit back within the EU's official limits

Germany is legal again. After violating the European fiscal speed limit for five years in a row, Germany's budget deficit is on track to dip below 3% of gross domestic product for 2006, according to the most recent official figures, released late last month. The nation will again fulfill the conditions that European countries—at Germany's insistence, ironically enough—agreed upon before creating the euro common currency in 1999.

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