Last week the Bank of England released a key paper that analyses the 'macroeconomics of central bank issued digital currencies'. The paper essentially asks what would happen if people could hold money electronically at the central bank, instead of having to use bank deposits (created by commercial banks). We wrote about it briefly last week but we're still working through the fine details of the 69-page mathematical model to figure out the implications for our work. In the meantime, the Bank of England's staff blog has just released a much more accessible discussion of the issues:
The Cambridge Journal of Economics (probably the leading journal of Post-Keynesian economics) has published an entire special issue on "Cranks and brave heretics: Rethinking money and banking after the Great Financial Crisis", inviting a range of academics to comment on proposals to stop banks creating money (amongst other ideas for monetary reform).
The Bank of England has just released its most significant paper yet. Macroeconomics of central bank issued digital currencies, by John Barrdear and Michael Kumhof, discusses the consequences of the central bank making a digital form of cash available to the general public, so that they are no longer forced to use bank deposits to make electronic payments:
In a significant breakthrough, the Bank of England (BoE) has just announced it will be adopting a policy change that Positive Money has been arguing for over the last 2 years. The BoE will finally allow non-bank ‘payment service providers’ (PSPs) to hold accounts at the BoE, so that they can compete with existing banks to provide current (checking) accounts. This will break the stranglehold that large UK banks have over the provision of payment accounts - and represents a step towards further changes that would limit the ability of banks to create money.
The Federal Reserve 'might legitimately consider’ using Public Money Creation in ‘extreme circumstances’, when there is ‘very weak growth’ or ‘deflation’, Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen said earlier this week at a press conference.