Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Towards a world without bills?

Given the success of Bitcoin as an alternative payment method arises a new reason for which to buy Bitcoins. Finding the best exchange rates starts to be even more important when you begin to evaluate the possibility of eliminating cash.

Recently several studies are exploring the possibility of introducing central banks to bitcoin that can replace banknotes in various parts of the world. Until now, it was technically impossible to create an "exchangeable digital cash" anonymously between equals and without intermediaries, such as banknotes. However, blockchain technology (combining distributed information records and cryptography, allowing direct transactions between peers) facilitates these schemes.

The use of blockchain allows to modify certain characteristics of the cash: its circulation can be limited to a restricted universe (against the universal character of the notes); Identify the holders (as opposed to the anonymity of the cash); Or introduce the payment of interest (compared to the fixed nominal value of the notes). Existing proposals pursue a number of objectives: to streamline wholesale interbank payment systems, to partially or totally replace cash (and thereby reduce their costs of informality, fiscal concealment and facility for criminal activity), to increase the capacity of monetary policies to set rates Negative interest and reduce the likelihood of banking crises.

On the other hand, the creation of deposits in the central bank for the whole population implies a separation between means of payment and provision of credit, whose implications for the conversion of saving in investment are not obvious. It may increase financial stability since it reduces the likelihood of banking crises, but it is unclear which alternative mechanism would transform demand deposits into medium- and long-term credit.

As a negative part, we could clarify that the control of Bitcoin would become the property of the World Banks. Since the emergence of the Monaco card and implements such as Gift card used by Bitxoxo, we saw that buying Bitcoins and selling Bitcoins leaves a certain pattern that can be traced. Perhaps in the future, the anonymity provided by Bitcoin will not be so strong, but at the same time, it will bring us more legal certainty regarding its transfers.

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