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CBDCs could destabilize banks, benefit households – report



The United States Treasury’s Office of Financial Research has released a study on the potential impact of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) on the economy, suggesting that while households may benefit, banks could face destabilization. The study focused on a theoretical “stable state” in the financial sector, after a stablecoin or CBDC had been successfully introduced. 

The researchers found that the introduction of a digital currency could cause banks to reduce the spread between lending and deposit rates by raising interest paid on deposits, which would leave them with less equity than they would have without digital currencies being present. While households would benefit from the competition between banks and digital currency, the resulting financial instability could have a negative effect on households if digital currency competed too well with bank deposits.

The study also noted that even when digital currencies do not cause financial instability, they may not be the best way to increase public welfare, and “profit-maximizing issuers in a competitive market” might outperform digital currency. The authors concluded that “financial frictions may limit the potential benefits of digital currencies, and the optimal level of digital currency may be below what would be issued in a competitive environment.”

The study’s findings have sparked debate about the potential benefits and drawbacks of CBDCs. While some experts believe that CBDCs could revolutionize the banking industry and bring financial services to the unbanked, others worry about the potential impact on financial stability.

“CBDCs are a double-edged sword,” said Kunal Kalra, founder of CoinRecoil, a cryptocurrency exchange. “On the one hand, they could increase financial inclusion and reduce costs for consumers. Also, they could destabilize the banking system and increase systemic risk.”

Others, however, believe that CBDCs could improve financial stability by reducing the risk of bank runs and other forms of financial instability. “CBDCs could provide a safe and secure alternative to bank deposits, which could reduce the risk of bank runs and other forms of financial instability,” said Joseph Lubin, founder of ConsenSys, a blockchain software company.

Regardless of the potential benefits and drawbacks of CBDCs, it is clear that they are becoming an increasingly important topic in the world of finance. Central banks around the world are exploring the potential of CBDCs, and some countries, such as China, have already begun testing them.


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