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Latvia Becomes 18th Euro-Area Member as Animosity Lingers

Latvia became the 18th member of the euro area today, with half the former Soviet republic’s citizens opposing the currency switch and expectations of rising prices at a seven-year high.

Finance Minister Andris Vilks, who helped make euro adoption one of the country’s key goals as Latvians endured the world’s deepest recession in 2008-2009, withdrew euro notes from a cash machine in front of TV cameras after midnight.