The euro went into the weekend feeling optimistic. After more than five months of fruitless negotiations between Greece and its creditors the prime minster called a referendum, asking voters to reject proposals by those creditors to provide new cash in return for renewed austerity. They did so in resounding fashion, yet four days later the prime minister put forward almost-identical proposals, which are thought to have the creditors' approval.

Investors are relieved, but not overjoyed, that an agreement is within reach. The euro was up on the week by two cents against sterling but it was unchanged against the US dollar. The pending agreement will be crucial; the lack of one would probably mean the end of the road for Greece's membership of the single currency and would surely be bad for the euro.