Briefing

Bank of Canada joins other central banks to study issuing digital currency

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The central banks of England, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, Canada and the eurozone, along with the Bank for International Settlements, intend to share information on digital currencies with each other as they consider launching government-backed digital money in their respective regions. Bank of Canada spokesperson Josianne Ménard told The Logic, “We are doing extensive research on this topic.” (The Logic)

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Talking point: The banks are banding together as China gets increasingly close to issuing its own digital currency and Facebook’s digital offering, Libra, is losing backers. Today, British telecom Vodafone backed out of Libra, the eighth firm to leave so far. In October 2019, The Logic broke the news that Canada’s central bank was considering launching its own digital currency that could share information with police and tax authorities. At the time, the bank said it hadn’t yet decided if it would launch it. Canada has played a leading role in previous international collaborations around digital currencies. Stephen Murchison, who led the Bank of Canada’s research into digital money, also chaired a report on financial innovation and fintechs for the Financial Stability Board, with which this new central bank group will be working closely.