Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20220828)

More Than Half Of All Bitcoin Trades Are Fake

One of the most common criticisms of bitcoin is pervasive wash trading (a form of fake volume) and poor surveillance across exchanges. According to research by Forbes, more than half of all reported trading volume across 157 crypto exchanges studied is likely to be fake or non-economic. For example, global daily bitcoin volume was $128 billion on June 14, 51% less than the $262 billion one would get by taking the sum of self-reported volume from multiple sources. [Read more at Forbes]

SEC delays VanEck’s third Bitcoin spot ETF application

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has pushed back a decision on the third and latest application for VanEck’s Bitcoin spot exchange-traded fund (ETF) from August 27, 2022 to October 11. VanEck’s first application lodged with the SEC in 2017, which was eventually denied. VanEck is now arguing that American investors were gaining exposure to Bitcoin through Canadian Bitcoin spot ETFs. [Read more at Coin Telegraph]

Post-Quantum Cryptography Scheme Is Cracked on a Laptop

On July 5, 2022, the U.S. government’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) selected four protocols that, with some revision, will be deployed as a cryptographic quantum shield, plus four additional candidates still under consideration. However, almost immediately, a pair of researchers broke one of those candidates in an hour on a laptop. [Read more at Quanta]

Cash, COVID-19 and the Prospects for a Canadian Digital Dollar

The Bank of Canada published a paper that provides an analysis of cash trends in Canada before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. It finds that cash demand has been strong pre-pandemic and increased sharply during the pandemic. While cash use fell initially due to the decreased number of in-person shopping opportunities, it recovered as containment measures eased. The paper concludes that the long-term trend away from cash use as a method of payment could lead to a decline of merchant acceptance over time and erode the broader demand for cash more generally, which could warrant the Bank of Canada issuing a digital dollar. [Read more at the Bank of Canada]

Discounted tickets available for CBDC Think Tank masterclass

The CBDC Think Tank, in partnership with the International Monetary Fund and George Washington University, is hosting a full-day in-person CBDC Masterclass on October 12 in Washington DC. The sessions are designed as instructional deep dives with full presentations and Q&A components.  Ticket prices are as low as $99 and you can save 30% by entering KIFFMEISTER where the registration page asks for a discount code. [Register here]

Also, the CBDC Think Tank, in partnership with Georgetown University and the DC FinTech Week, is hosting a FREE Digital Currency Lecture Series, a set of digital currency lightning talks delivered by subject matter experts, on October 14 in Washington DC. [Request an invite here]

Kiffmeister’s Global Central Bank Digital Currency Monthly Monitor

Just a reminder that I produce a monthly digest of central bank digital currency (CBDC) developments exclusively for the official sector. So for any of you out there who work for a central bank, ministry of finance or international financial institution who would like to receive it by email on the first business day of every month, please DM me on LinkedIn or email me at