In the 1990s, to join the Euro was the overriding objective of Portuguese policymakers. The success in this task implied the most important regime shift in economic policy since the Gold Standard in 1854.
For macroeconomists, the decade of 1990 was quite interesting. After the decision of create a single currency for Europe, there was a lively debate about Optimal Currency Areas. It soon became clear that Europe did not fulfill the basic criteria to qualify as one. Then the debate shifted a little bit. The question was no longer if Europe was an Optimal Currency Area, but rather whether Europe could become one after the adoption of the single currency. The argument was that some of the necessary conditions to have an Optimal Currency Area, would be promoted by a single currency. These conditions included stronger financial linkages, more trade among member states, more labor mobility, harmonized monetary and fiscal policies, etc. Ten years after the Euro, what can be said about Portugal?