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Is this the year that the eurocrisis ends?

The European Central Bank has moved to shore up the euro, investors are more confident, and European leaders are surprisingly upbeat. But critics warn that Europe is not out of the woods.

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European Central Bank President Mario Draghi attends a monthly news conference in Frankfurt in this April 2012 file photo. Mr. Draghi is widely credited with the current rise in positivity over the resolution of Europe's debt crisis.

Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters/File

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The eurozone crisis is over – that is, if you choose to believe Jose Manuel Barroso, the president of the European Commission.

Speaking to Portuguese diplomats in Lisbon last Thursday, Mr. Barroso said that "the perception of risk in the eurozone has disappeared." The former Portuguese prime minister added, "Investors have understood that when European leaders commit themselves to doing everything to safeguard the integrity of the euro, they mean business."

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So, will 2013 be remembered as the year the eurozone crisis came to an end – without the much-predicted collapse of the common currency, or at least the dropout of some of its members? Or are the skeptics right who say that European leaders have only bought time, and 2013 will be the year eurozone citizens even in the richer countries feel the painful results of austerity programs, sending the European economy deeper and deeper into recession?

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