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Back to the D-mark?

December 26, 2010

A survey commissioned by the German newspaper Bild has found that many Germans are unhappy with how the common European currency has worked out and would gladly go back to the good old deutschmark.

A memorial to the deutschmark
Some Germans would happily swap their euros for deutschmarksImage: Fotolia/christian-colista

It's been a tough year for the euro, with debt crises in some eurozone countries chipping away at the common European currency's value. Many fiscally disciplined Germans were frustrated to see their taxes going to bail out Greece and Ireland, whose governments' debts had threatened to bring the euro down.

Euro coins in a hand
The past year has seen increasing pressure on the single currencyImage: picture-alliance/dpa

For that reason, it seems that many Germans look fondly back to the days of the deutschmark, once one of the world's most stable currencies. German daily Bild commissioned a survey by Cologne's YouGov-Institute that found that 49 percent of Germans want the deutschmark back. Only 41 percent of those surveyed don't.

The survey also found that the majority of Germans are worried about the stability of the euro and the possibility of inflation. Some 77 percent of the 1,068 people questioned by YouGov said they personally had not profited from the adoption of the euro.

Would they adopt the euro today?

If the country were currently not part of the eurozone, only 30 percent of those asked would today vote to adopt the euro and 60 percent would vote against such a move.

Yet despite the respondents' concerns, the majority believes the euro is here to stay. Asked whether the euro would still be country's currency in 20 years, 55 percent of the respondents said yes.

Germany adopted the euro in 1999 along with 10 other countries. Greece signed on in 2001 and euro bills and coins were introduced in 2002. Since then Slovenia, Cyprus, Malta and Slovakia have joined as well. On January 1, Estonia will become the 17th member of the euro area.

Author: Holly Fox
Editor: Ben Knight