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Dennis Rodman claims to know what North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wants from the United States, but the former NBA star-turned-amateur diplomat says the only person he’ll tell is Donald Trump. In Beijing after what he called “a great week of humanitarian work in Guam and Tokyo,” Rodman told…
The Washington Post reporter whom President Trump wants fired for a misleading tweet about a recent Trump rally resigned from the newspaper years ago for disparaging Republicans in a string of emails.
The Kentucky county clerk who made headlines two years ago for refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples is up for re-election next year—and one of the men she denied a license to has announced plans to run against her. Reuters reports that David Ermold of Morehead will…
The FBI sent out 4170 requests in 2016 to retrieve guns from people who never should have been able to purchase them, an increase of more than 1000 over the year before. USA Today reports that the FBI sent requests to agents from the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms…
While American central bankers are still just monitoring the risks bitcoin poses to the established banking system, their counterparts across the Atlantic are already preparing to compete with the popular cryptocurrency. A member of the European Central Bank (ECB) executive board has called on commercial banks to implement new solutions that, in his view, will curb the rapid growth of bitcoin among everyday users.
“Banks need to implement instant payments as soon as possible and provide an alternative narrative to the ongoing public debate on the alleged innovation brought by virtual currency schemes,” ECB director Yves Mersch told bankers at a meeting in Rome.
This supposed alternative to bitcoin might be part of a two-pronged attack on the cryptocurrency by the ECB which is known to be looking into “legal restraints” against its users in the areas under the jurisdiction of the central bank.
This year’s explosive price rally and mainstream financial adoption of bitcoin are seen by supporters as a direct challenge to central banks. Beyond the possible monetary effects in the future, the success of bitcoin signals people’s discontent with the handling of their money supply by the Fed, ECB and their equivalent institutions around the world.
No ECB-Coin Just Yet
The ECB director, who proposed in January a model for a central bank issued digital currency, has now indicated that the time is not yet ripe for such an innovation. He said: “We shall also experiment with cash on different digital technologies. Other adventurous applications of a more disruptive nature are simply not robust enough.”
By focusing strictly on digital cash applications by commercial banks, offering instant transactions and 24/7 service, Mersch is going against a recent trend among central bankers in Europe. Both Sweden’s Riksbank and the Bank of England have revealed they are examining their options for national cryptocurrencies or blockchain-based alternatives.
The main reason for this approach by the ECB is apparently to accommodate member countries such as Germany where cash usage is still very high. Bundesbank board member Carl-Ludwig Thiele, commented from Berlin that: “The issue of digital central bank money is in our view not a realistic option for the foreseeable future.”
Will Europeans really ever dump bitcoin for an eEuro? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
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South Korea’s unification minister dismissed Pyongyang’s ambitions of unifying the Korean Peninsula on its terms, instead urging North Korea to sit down with Seoul for talks.
WSJ.com: What’s News Asia
The financial backers of Semanal Media — the fledgling company buying LA Weekly from Voice Media Group — are still largely a mystery. But they have selected someone to manage the paper’s operations: Brian Calle, who on Thursday laid out an ambitious vision for the alternative newsweekly as the…
Florida and New York could soon see an influx of temporary new residents, reports CNN , as FEMA works with those two states to let Puerto Rican hurricane survivors relocate to the US mainland. At the top of the list would be the 3,000 or so people stuck in shelters…
Scott Dozier is scheduled to die via lethal injection Nov. 14, and he’s ready for his execution—he requested last year that his appeals stop, and he has an agreement with his defense attorneys not to seek a delay—but his lawyers have concerns about the method that will be…