An index measuring the risk of a euro breakup has fallen to its lowest level on record, perhaps sealing the turnaround for the region after a decade of economic hardship, financial and political turmoil.
A survey by German pollster sentix showed that only 6.9 percent of respondents expect the 19-nation currency bloc to split within the next 12 months.
The index was started at the height of the sovereign debt crisis in June 2012, and reached as high as 73 percent one month later. That same month, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi made his famous "whatever it takes" speech, effectively restoring confidence in the currency bloc.
Despite the overall decline, Italy's chances of leaving the euro area rose slightly ahead of elections in early March, to 5.2 percent. With Greece, Italy is the only country with an exit probability higher than 1 percent.
``At the beginning of 2018, the euro zone is still in robust shape,'' said sentix Managing Director Manfred Huebner. ``As in the past few months, only a few investors are expecting major unrest in the euro zone.''
Sentix surveyed about 1,000 institutional and retail investors in the poll conducted Jan. 25-27.