Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20230201)

Cross-border cross-currency CBDCs and automated market-making

R3 published a report on the application of automated market makers (AMMs) to cross-border and cross-currency central bank digital currency (CBDC). AMM structures, which are are common in the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem, increase price transparency, work for low liquidity instruments, and bring the process of trading and settlement closer together. Such outcomes could benefit segments of today’s FX market. However, adapting AMM to  spot FX markets will need to answer questions including: who would run it, what formula might be appropriate for larger transactions, and how to incentivize participants. [Read more at R3]

UK Government outlines plans to regulate crypto-asset industry

The UK Government has floated proposals to bring cryptoassets into the same regulatory regime as traditional financial services. The consultation sets out key design features of the regime covering themes such as prudential requirements, data reporting, consumer protection, location policy and operational resilience. The paper also proposes regimes for a range of cross-cutting issues which apply across crypto-asset activities and business models, including market abuse and crypto-asset issuance and disclosures. [Read more at HM Treasury]

Fintech funding drops 46%; banking startups among worst hit

In 2022, fintech companies secured a total of $75.2 billion in funding, a 46% decline from 2021. Deal counts also decreased, falling 8% year-on-year from 5,474 deals in 2021 to 5,048 deals last year. Fintech funding steady declined throughout the year, dropping from $30.4 billion in Q1 to $21.2 billion in Q2, $13 billion in Q3 and $10.7 billion in Q4 – the latter being the lowest level since 2018. Banking startups took the biggest hit, with funding plummeting 63% and deals falling 33% year-over-year. [Read more at FintechNews.ch]

DeFi fans are courting traders in $7.2 trillion currency market

A paper by Uniswap and Circle staff compared the traditional trading and settlement of FX with blockchain-based implementations using payment stablecoins and automated market making protocols. Using public blockchain data, they quantified the liquidity, stability, and transaction costs of on-chain FX transactions in early adoption. Their estimates suggested that on-chain FX can reduce the cost of remittance by as much as 80%. [Read more at SSRN]

Crypto money laundering: four exchange deposit addresses received over $1 billion in illicit funds in 2022

According to Chainalysis, illicit addresses sent nearly $23.8 billion worth of cryptocurrency in 2022, a 68.0% increase over 2021. As is usually the case, mainstream centralized exchanges were the biggest recipient of illicit cryptocurrency, taking in just under half of all funds sent from illicit addresses. More illicit funds were sent to DeFi protocols than ever before, a continuation of a trend that began in 2020. [Read more at Chainalysis]

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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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The Sovereign Official Digital Association (SODA) is a technology-agnostic firm offering advisory services at the intersection of central banking, digital finance and the web3 industry, aiming to make public digital money a reality. SODA believes institutions in the existing financial ecosystem should have access to the tools and resources they need to move from discussion to action. SODA offers ‘real life’ use cases to help test digital money and drive adoption as central banks and other public institutions explore the future of a more financially inclusive world powered by interoperable blockchain-based networks. SODA would love you to join us on this journey – please get in touch (chris@sodapublicmoney.org).

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20230122)

Binance says Signature Bank sets transaction minimum amid pullback

Binance said Signature Bank will only handle user transactions of more than $100,000 as of February 1, 2023. According to Binance, this is the case for all of Signature Bank’s crypto exchange clients, and only its Signature Bank customers are affected. An earlier story from AsiaMarkets.com said that this limit applied to all banks. Also, Binance said that only 0.01% of its average monthly users are serviced by Signature Bank, but those customers would still be able to use their credit or debit cards to buy or sell cryptocurrencies. Also, SWIFT-based transfers would remain in operation for non-USD bank transfers, and the change wouldn’t impact its “corporate accounts.” [Read more at CoinTelegraph]

On-Chain Foreign Exchange and Cross-Border Payments

Circle Financial and Uniswap Labs staff published the results of their studies of the use of distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the trading and settlement of foreign exchange (FX) on public blockchains. They compared the traditional trading and settlement of FX with DLT-based implementations using stablecoins and automated market makers. Using public blockchain data, they quantified the liquidity, stability, and transaction costs of on-chain FX transactions in early adoption. They found consistency between on-chain FX exchange rate and those observed through traditional trading venues and stable on-chain liquidity throughout all times of the day and weekends. Their estimates suggest that on-chain FX can reduce the cost of remittance by as much as 80 percent. [Read More at SSRN]

Empirical evidence on the ownership and liquidity of real estate tokens

A paper by Robeco’s Laurens Swinkels examined the financial and economic consequences of tokenizing 58 residential rental properties in the US, particularly those in Detroit. Tokenization aims at fragmented ownership. He found that the residential properties examined have 254 owners on average. Investors with a greater than $5,000 investment in real estate tokens, diversified their real estate ownership across properties within and across the cities. Property ownership changed about once yearly, with more changes for properties on decentralized exchanges. He reported that real estate token prices moved according to the house price index; hence, investing in real estate tokens provided economic exposure to residential house prices. [Read more at Financial Innovation]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The Sovereign Official Digital Association (SODA) is a technology-agnostic firm offering advisory services at the intersection of central banking, digital finance and the web3 industry, aiming to make public digital money a reality. SODA believes institutions in the existing financial ecosystem should have access to the tools and resources they need to move from discussion to action. SODA offers ‘real life’ use cases to help test digital money and drive adoption as central banks and other public institutions explore the future of a more financially inclusive world powered by interoperable blockchain-based networks. SODA would love you to join us on this journey – please get in touch (chris@sodapublicmoney.org).

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20230117)

I’m pleased to announce that I have joined the SODA (Sovereign Official Digital Association) team as its Research Director. SODA works with central banks, international organizations and financial institutions to provide real life use cases for public digital money. Central bank digital currency (CBDC), stablecoins and tokenized digital assets will become part of the financial landscape in the 2020s; SODA offers technology agnostic tools and resources to move from discussion to action and begin to explore the future of a more financially inclusive world. [Learn more about SODA here]

Also, Tokyo Fintech published a video of a presentation I gave on retail CBDC for your viewing enjoyment. [Watch it here]

Eurogroup statement on the digital euro project

The Council of the European Union (Eurogroup) reaffirmed its support for the continued efforts of all European and national institutions involved in the preparatory work for the potential issuance of a digital euro. It asserted that a digital euro should complement, and not replace cash, and should guarantee access to central bank money for euro area users in times of increased digitalization in payments.A risk-based approach could be followed to allow for more privacy in the case of less risky transactions, which could ensure a wider adoption of the digital euro among citizens with a stronger preference for privacy. The Council also supports the exploration of an offline functionality which would serve a wider range of use cases and also contribute to financial inclusion. [Read more at the Eurogroup]

Philippines central bank pushes through with wholesale CBDC plans to improve payments

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has reportedly confirmed that it will not be exploring retail CBDC, instead focusing on wholesale CBDC to improve settlement times between banks. In April 2022 the BSP announced the start of its Project CBDCPh wholesale CBDC pilot program, with several leading financial institutions playing a part. On the retail payments front, the BSP has been focusing on drumming up support for private-sector digital payment rails, like they did with its recent “BSP Piso Caravan” program aimed at encouraging the public to replace their unfit banknotes and coins with digital cash. [Read more at the Philippine Star]

Iran and Russia are reportedly working on gold-backed stablecoin

Iran and Russia are reportedly looking to launch a new gold-backed stablecoin to be used for cross-border transactions in the place of the US dollar, the Iranian rial and the Russian ruble in the Persian Gulf region. The cryptocurrency would also specifically intended as a payment method in the Astrakhan area – an economic zone whose design helped Russia begin to receive cargo shipments from Iran. [Read more at Vedomosti]

2023 Crypto Crime Trends: Illicit Cryptocurrency Volumes Reach All-Time Highs Amid Surge in Sanctions Designations and Hacking

Chainalysis reports that, despite the market downturn, illicit crypto transaction volume rose for the second consecutive year, hitting an all-time high of $20.1 billion, likely a lower bound estimate. The measure of illicit transaction volume is sure to grow over time as new addresses associated with illicit activity are identified, and the figure doesn’t capture proceeds from non-crypto native crime (e.g. conventional drug trafficking involving cryptocurrency as a mode of payment). For example, in 2022 Chainalysis reported $14 billion in illicit activity in 2021, but that figure has now been raised to $18 billion, mostly due to the discovery of new crypto scams. [Read more at Chainalysis]

European Union Postpones MiCA Vote to April

The final vote on the European Union’s (EU’s) Markets in Crypto Assets Regulation (MiCA) legislation has been delayed until April 2023 due to translation issues. EU procedures require legal acts such as MiCA, which was negotiated in English, to be available in all the bloc’s 24 official languages. [Read more at CoinDesk]

ISO 20022 for dummies

SWIFT has published a comprehensive guide to the ISO 20022 messaging standard, outlining everything from the very basics, to why it matters, its impact and the benefits it offers. [Download the guide at SWIFT]

2nd Edition of DC³ Conference – From Cryptocurrencies to Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs)

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) will hold (virtually) the second edition of its DC3 Conference – From Cryptocurrencies to Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs)​ from January 24 to 27 2023. On January 27 I will be moderating two panels on offline central bank digital currency (CBDC). Also, on January 24, Jacques Francouer and I will be providing an update to our ITU Digital Currency Global Initiative digital currency ontology work. [For more event detail go to the ITU DC3 conference site]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The Sovereign Official Digital Association (SODA) is a technology-agnostic firm offering advisory services at the intersection of central banking, digital finance and the web3 industry, aiming to make public digital money a reality. SODA believes institutions in the existing financial ecosystem should have access to the tools and resources they need to move from discussion to action. SODA offers ‘real life’ use cases to help test digital money and drive adoption as central banks and other public institutions explore the future of a more financially inclusive world powered by interoperable blockchain-based networks. SODA would love you to join us on this journey – please get in touch (chris@sodapublicmoney.org).

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20230111)

Indians living in ten countries can now make payments through UPI

India’s National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has extended access to the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) to non-resident Indians from 10 countries (Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States). Indians living abroad comprise the world’s largest overseas remittance-sending diaspora.  Other countries like Nepal, Bhutan, and Singapore, have already signed deals with NPCI to integrate their payment networks with UPI, enabling seamless cross-border payments. [Read more at the NPCI]

ABN AMRO issues tokenized corporate bond on public blockchain

ABN AMRO issued a €450,000 bond on a public blockchain on behalf of APOC Aviation. The bond’s entire issuance process was digital, including the preparation, placement and documentation. Ownership of the digital asset was recorded on the blockchain after payment was received, but payment took place on conventional payment rails. Investors store the digital assets in a wallet. [Read more at ABN AMRO]

2nd Edition of DC³ Conference – From Cryptocurrencies to Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs)

The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) will hold (virtually) the second edition of its DC3 Conference – From Cryptocurrencies to Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs)​ from January 24 to 27 2023. On January 27 I will be moderating two panels on offline central bank digital currency (CBDC). Also, on January 24, Jacques Francouer and I will be providing an update to our ITU Digital Currency Global Initiative digital currency ontology work. [For more event detail go to the ITU DC3 conference site]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The Sovereign Official Digital Association (SODA) is a technology-agnostic firm offering advisory services at the intersection of central banking, digital finance and the web3 industry, aiming to make public digital money a reality. SODA believes institutions in the existing financial ecosystem should have access to the tools and resources they need to move from discussion to action. SODA offers ‘real life’ use cases to help test digital money and drive adoption as central banks and other public institutions explore the future of a more financially inclusive world powered by interoperable blockchain-based networks. SODA would love you to join us on this journey – please get in touch (chris@sodapublicmoney.org).

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221209)

CBDCTracker.org updated its central bank digital currency (CBDC) database. Key highlights include the Reserve Bank of India starting a digital rupee pilot, the Bank of Korea sharing its second phase results, the BIS sharing the results of their joint six-week pilot project, a Central bank of the Bahamas dive into to the unexpected low adoption of its Sand Dollar, and the Central Bank of Türkiye’s plans to start piloting a retail CBDC in 2023. [Check the data out at CBDCTracker.org here and read Atakan Kavuklu’s summary of the key changes here]

OMFIF publishes the 2022 edition of its Future of Payments report

The Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF) published the 2022 edition of its Future of Payments report. It focuses particularly on the challenges of cross-border payments for emerging market countries, delving into the validity of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins as a means of escaping domestic inflation and sending cheap remittances. It also examines the value proposition of CBDC for emerging markets, as well as looking at some of the progress made by CBDC cross-border integration projects. Notably, while central banks think that interlinking CBDCs might be a promising avenue for enhancing cross-border payments, they are not pursuing CBDC in order to provide a solution to the cross-border payments problem. The consensus is that CBDCs must justify their existence with other merits , such as improving financial inclusion. [Download the report at OMFIF]

Bank of England CBDC Sample Wallet Proof of Concept and Research

The Bank of England has put out a request for proposal (RFP) for proof of concept work on a sample central bank digital currency (CBDC) wallet, to help make a potential CBDC product more tangible for internal and external stakeholders, eg. as a prototype for future user testing. It will also support the Bank’s work towards the BIS Innovation Hub’s ‘Project Rosalind’, by testing integration of a front-end with the Rosalind API. Key deliverables will be (1) a mobile wallet app (built on both android as well as iOS); (2) wallet website; and, (3) an example merchant website, and (4) back-end server to serve mobile app and website, including calling the core ledger API and stored user data and transaction history. [Read more at the Gov.UK Digital Marketplace]

The economics of a retail central bank digital currency in Australia

Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) Assistant Governor Brad Jones discussed where the case for a retail CBDC in Australia fits into the wider international debate over the future of money, and provided an update on the RBI’s retail CBDC pilot project. On balance, the RBA does not yet see a case for issuing an eAUD, but the central bank is “keeping an open mind” as its eAUD pilot program remains in full swing. The program has not prescribed use cases in advance, instead inviting the applicants (80 of them) to propose their own use cases (140), from which the RBA eAUD project team will select to take forward into the pilot phase in early 2023. [Read more at the RBA]

Spain’s central bank opens call for proposals for wholesale CBDC project

The Banco de España is starting a wholesale CBDC project, and asking financial institutions and tech providers to submit proposals for the initiative by January 31. The project will focus on (i) simulating wholesale CBDC funds transfers; (ii) testing the integration of a wholesale CBDC in the settlement of financial assets; and, arising from the above, (iii) analyzing possible pros and cons of a wholesale CBDC versus traditional processes, procedures and infrastructures. [Read more at the Banco de España]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221203)

Bank of Namibia consultation paper on central bank digital currency (CBDC)

The Bank of Namibia (BoN) published a consultation paper on central bank digital currency (CBDC). It notes that its degrees of freedom is likely to be influenced by Namibia’s Common Monetary Area (CMA) membership, with the South African Rand co-circulating alongside the Namibia Dollar as legal tender in Namibia. The options open to Rand holders are likely to also impact the options that the BoN would give Namibia Dollar holders. Hence, the CBDC direction taken by South African Reserve Bank is likely to have an impact on the BoN’s decisions in this regard. Consultations and collaborations between the CMA member countries are being held to push for and develop as far as possible, a common view and approach on CBDCs that will serve all the CMA countries optimally. [Read more at the BoN]

Curb your enthusiasm: The Fintech hype meets reality in the remittances market

The IMF published a paper that investigates claims that the remittances market is on the verge of being disrupted by Fintechs. As remittances are considered too costly and incumbent remittance service providers inefficient, opaque, and outdated. The paper concludes that, contrary to expectations, instead of disrupting incumbents Fintechs have increasingly been entangled with them. Therefore, not only there is no evidence of disruption, but it is unlikely to occur in the foreseeable future. Even so, the paper argues that Fintechs play an important role in the remittances market. Richard Turrin provides an excellent summary of the paper on LinkedIn. [Download the paper at the IMF]

Rising Tether loans add risk to stablecoin, crypto world

The Wall Street Journal published an article that claims that Tether has increasingly been lending its own USDT stablecoins to customers rather than selling them for hard currency upfront. “The shift adds to risks that the company may not have enough liquid assets to pay redemptions in a crisis.” Tether says it does indeed make short-term USDT loans to carefully vetted customers, but they are required to post “lots of extremely liquid” collateral, which could be sold for dollars if borrowers default. About 9% of USDT’s backing assets are comprised of such secured loans, according to Bloomberg’s Matt Levine. [Read more at the Wall Street Journal]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221119)

FSB outlines framework for monitoring progress toward the G20 cross-border payments targets

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) published its report to the G20 on the framework for monitoring progress toward meeting the targets for the G20 Roadmap for Enhancing Cross-border Payments, to achieve cheaper, faster, more transparent, and more accessible payments. The framework includes key performance indicators defined across the 11 targets for the three market segments – wholesale, retail, and remittances. Notably, the definitions of the wholesale and retail market segments have been adjusted to more clearly separate the differing use cases and end-user experiences and better align the definitions with those most typically used by the payments industry and end-users.

Wholesale transactions were defined as those between financial institutions, and retail transactions as those that were neither between financial institution end-users nor in the third market segment – remittances. Going forward, the wholesale market segment will include all payments with a value equal to or exceeding a specified threshold regardless of whether the end-users are financial institutions. The threshold will be set at a level that captures the use cases in this market segment, such as high-value corporate business-to-business. Relatedly, retail payments will be payments with a value less than the specified threshold, not including remittances. [Read more at the FSB]

Instant Payments: Regulatory Innovation and Payment Substitution Across Countries

The IMF published a paper that makes the case for instant payment systems as an alternative to retail central bank digital currency (CBDC). Instant, or fast, payments are credit transfers completed and settled within seconds or minutes. They have low costs, reduce payment risk, and have significantly replaced the use of cash, cards, or check and direct debit payments. The authors of the report note the role played by regulators in promoting instant payments and identify instances of significant payment instrument substitution across 12 advanced and emerging market economies. This substitution reflects the realized demand for attributes offered by instant payments. As these attributes are quite similar to those for CBDC, the demand for retail CBDC (if issued) may be less compelling. [Read more at the IMF]

State of Instant and Inclusive Payment Systems in Africa

The State of Instant and Inclusive Payment Systems in Africa report is an AfricaNenda’s initiative together with the World Bank and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. The report aims to inform payment actors in Africa and beyond about the developments in the instant retail payment system ecosystem on the continent. This first edition highlights the current landscape of instant payment systems, including an assessment of the inclusivity of such systems, through their accessibility to all end-users, their capacity to ensure fair access and design input opportunities for all licensed payment providers. The report also dives into end users’ experiences pointing to the fact that IPS are still far from meeting all consumers’ payment needs. [Read more at AfricaNenda]

Crypto-assets: evolution and policy response

De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) published a paper intended underpin the central bank’s crypto-asset policy position. The study aims to: (i) deepen understanding of the functioning of crypto-assets and their attractiveness; (ii) revisit their main opportunities and risks, and (iii) summarize views on ongoing efforts regarding regulation, supervision and enforcement. [Read more at the DNB]

Digital Euro Association Digital Money Academy

I will be discussing global central bank digital currency (CBDC) developments at the Digital Euro Association’s Digital Money Academy on November 29. If you want to get into CBDCs, register for the Academy 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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221103)

Monetary Authority of Singapore launches Ubin+

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) launched Ubin+, an expanded collaboration with international partners on cross-border foreign exchange (FX) settlement using wholesale central bank digital currency (CBDC).  Ubin+ will develop technical standards and infrastructure to support cross-border connectivity, interoperability and atomic settlement of digital currency transactions across platforms using distributed ledger technology (DLT), and non-DLT based financial market infrastructures. It will also evaluate the efficiency and risk implications of such platforms, and establish the related policy frameworks. (The BIS Innovation Hub led Project Mariana that is investigating the use of decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols and automated market makers (AMMs) to automate FX trading and settlement announced yesterday, is part of Ubin+.) [Read more at the MAS]

Zimbabwe draws on Nigeria lessons in cryptocurrency plans

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Deputy Governor Innocent Matshe reportedly said the RBZ will proceed with plans to a CBDC, undeterred By the slow adoption of Nigeria’s eNaira. In addition to sending a team to learn from the Central Bank of Nigeria’s experiences, the RBZ has also reportedly sent teams with a similar mission to countries like China and Ghana. [Read more on Bloomberg]

It’s time to explore institutional decentralized finance (DeFi)

The Oliver Wyman Forum, in partnership with DBS, JP Morgan’s Onyx, and SBI, published a paper that makes the case for “institutional DeFi” , a system that combines the power and efficiency of decentralized finance (DeFi) software protocols with a level of protections and controls that regulators demand and customers expect. These include identity solutions to enable financial institutions to comply with anti-money laundering (AML) and know your customer (KYC) regulations, strong cybersecurity to minimize the threat of hacking incidents, and recourse mechanisms to make investors whole if something goes wrong. [Read more at Oliver Wyman]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The CBDC Think Tank is a New York-based technology- and vendor-agnostic digital currency knowledge-sharing hub for staff of central banks, international financial institutions (IFIs) and non-government organizations (NGOs). It runs webinars, workshops, and masterclasses to disseminate knowledge and facilitate communication. It also engages in advisory work, focusing on delivering impact that best aligns with the needs of its clients and the forward progress of human civilization. The CBDC Think Tank welcomes requests from central bank officials for CBDC advisory services.  [click here for more information].

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221102)

Project Mariana: CBDCs in automated market makers

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub, Banque de France, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Swiss National Bank launched Project Mariana, to investigate the use of decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols to automate FX trading and settlement. The project will explore the use of automated market makers (AMMs) for the cross-border exchange of hypothetical CHF, EUR and SGD wholesale central bank digital currency (CBDC). AMMs combine smart contracts with pooled liquidity to price and transfer digital assets automatically. [Read more at the BIS]

MAS Completes Its First Digital Asset Live Trades Under Project Guardian

The MAS’s Project Guardian DeFi-based wholesale funding platform completed its first live trades, with DBS Bank, JP Morgan and SBI Digital Asset Holdings conducting live foreign exchange and government bond transactions against liquidity pools comprising of tokenized Singapore and Japanese government bonds, Japanese Yen (JPY) and Singapore Dollar (SGD). More industry pilots have been launched to test the application of asset tokenization and DeFi across a broader range of use cases in the financial sector. [Read more at the MAS]

Singapore Starts Two New Token Pilots With Standard Chartered, HSBC and Others

The MAS is starting two pilot projects to explore trade finance and wealth management product tokenization. The trade finance project will be led by Standard Chartered, and the wealth management product one involves HSBC, UOB, and Marketnode, a digital asset platform built by the Singapore Exchange and Temasek. [Read more at the MAS]

India’s CBDC makes glitch-free start in the world of real-time trades

India’s wholesale CBDC reportedly made a steady and glitch-free start in the world of real-time trades on its first day (November 1, 2022), with several banks using the virtual money backed by Mint Road to settle nearly 50 government bond transactions cumulatively worth about Rs 275 crore. [Read more at the Economic Times]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The CBDC Think Tank is a New York-based technology- and vendor-agnostic digital currency knowledge-sharing hub for staff of central banks, international financial institutions (IFIs) and non-government organizations (NGOs). It runs webinars, workshops, and masterclasses to disseminate knowledge and facilitate communication. It also engages in advisory work, focusing on delivering impact that best aligns with the needs of its clients and the forward progress of human civilization. The CBDC Think Tank welcomes requests from central bank officials for CBDC advisory services.  [click here for more information].

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]

Kiffmeister’s #Fintech Daily Digest (20221026)

Central Bank of Turkey plans to pilot test a CBDC in 2023

According to Turkey’s Presidential Annual Program for 2023, the Central Bank of Turkey will start piloting a central bank digital currency (CBDC) in 2023. Many news services are reporting that a Digital Lira will be launched in 2023, but according to Google Translate the key passage in the Annual Program Budget Rationale (“kullanım testlerine başlanacaktır”) translates to “usage tests will begin” which sounds like a pilot to me. But it does sound like several proofs of concept (PoC) have been done (the Annual Program calls them “pilots”, but if they didn’t include “usage tests” then they’re PoCs by my definition. Also, wholesale CBDCs will be the subject of research, development and testing activities that will be carried out with banks. [Read more at the Turkish Presidency of Strategy and Budget]

Project mBridge: Connecting economies through CBDC

The BIS Innovation Hub’s (BISIH’s) Hong Kong Center and its partner central banks published the results of its pilot testing of its mBridge multi-CBDC (mCBDC) multi-currency cross-border transaction platform. Over six weeks in 2022, the platform was put to the test through a pilot involving real-value transactions among 20 commercial banks from four different jurisdictions. Over $12 million was issued on the platform, facilitating over 160 payment and FX payment-versus-payment (PVP) transactions totaling more than $22 million in value. [Read more at the BIS and for a nice summary, including a discussion of some of the challenges faced, see this CoinDesk article]

Singapore lays down the law for crypto trading and stablecoins

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) published two consultation papers proposing strict regulatory measures to reduce the risk to consumers from cryptocurrency trading while supporting the development of stablecoins as a credible medium of exchange. One of the papers is focused on reducing the risk to consumers from speculative trading in cryptocurrencies, requiring that digital payment token (DPT) service providers ensure proper business conduct and adequate risk disclosure. The other paper is focused on ensuring that stablecoins have a high degree of value stability, including imposing capital requirements on nonbank issuers. [Read more at the MAS]

Alipay enables transfers to WeChat users via QR codes

AntGroup’s Alipay added a feature that permits its users to transfer sums to WeChat users, bridging the two Chinese digital payments providers.  To perform a transfer, Alipay users first need to select the payment amount they would like to transfer. After that, the app generates a QR code that can be shared with counterparties via WeChat, QQ, Sina Weibo, or DingDing. The move follows the launch of anti-trust measures by the Chinese central government targeting the two payment platforms, as well as practices such as exclusive agreements with vendors and the use of big data to engage in discriminatory pricing. [Read more at the Paypers]

The macroeconomic impact of cryptocurrency and stablecoin economics

The World Economic Forum’s (WEF’s) Digital Currency Governance Consortium has published a summary of the earlier-published comprehensive analysis of the macroeconomic impact of cryptocurrency and stablecoins. The project had two objectives: (i) to project economic outcomes of crypto and stablecoins given various possible high-level regulatory paths and (ii) to arm policymakers and business leaders with the projections to inform decision-making. The rising concern around the potential spillover effects of crypto and stablecoins on the financial system was another impetus. [Read more at the WEF]

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 chronicles@kiffmeister.com.

The CBDC Think Tank is a New York-based technology- and vendor-agnostic digital currency knowledge-sharing hub for staff of central banks, international financial institutions (IFIs) and non-government organizations (NGOs). It runs webinars, workshops, and masterclasses to disseminate knowledge and facilitate communication. It also engages in advisory work, focusing on delivering impact that best aligns with the needs of its clients and the forward progress of human civilization. The CBDC Think Tank welcomes requests from central bank officials for CBDC advisory services.  [click here for more information].

Satoshi Capital Advisors is a New York-based, global advisory firm that works with central banks, governments, and the private sector to architect, implement, and operate varying initiatives. Satoshi Capital Advisors’ central bank work revolves around CBDC architecture and implementation, providing advisory services from research phase through to growth phase. Utilizing a product-market fit and technology agnostic approach to CBDC architecture and implementation enables Satoshi Capital Advisors to build tailored solutions, bespoke to local financial system nuances. Satoshi Capital Advisors welcomes requests from central bank officials for virtual and in-person CBDC workshops. [Click here for more information]

WhisperCash offers the first fully offline digital currency platform that has the same properties as physical cash. It can perform secure consecutive offline payments without compromising on security, privacy or accessibility. WhisperCash allows direct person to person offline payments without any server infrastructure or internet connectivity. It comes in various form factors including the self-contained credit card-sized “Pro” that sports an eInk screen and capacitive keyboard, and lasts for two weeks between recharges assuming a few transactions per day. [Click here for more information]