The Global Move Toward Central Bank Digital Currencies

Published on
January 25th, 2021
66 minutes

The Global Move Toward Central Bank Digital Currencies

The Interview - Crypto ·
Featuring Ryan Todd, Michael Rogers, and Ash Bennington

Published on: January 25th, 2021 • Duration: 66 minutes

Ryan Todd and Michael Rogers, research analysts at The Block, join Ash Bennington, Real Vision senior editor, to discuss central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), existing monetary policy, and first movers in the digitization of fiat dollars. They explain that there is growing interest from governments around the world to experiment with CBDCs. Until recently, much of their development is happening behind the scenes with little public attention. Todd describes the current implementation of monetary policy, focusing on the recent rapid increase in money printing and how digital versions of the dollar would enable central banks to enact policy with more speed and less friction. They discuss one of the leaders in CBDCs, the Bahamas and their “Sand Dollar”, as well as how other countries that have been slow to act and yet are increasingly interested in digitizing their own currencies are pursuing the adoption of CBDCs. Filmed on January 20, 2021. Key Learnings: As governments and central banks have taken a strong interest in digitizing their fiat currencies, some countries have taken the lead in creating and experimenting with digital fiat currencies while others, like the United States, are taking slower, more reserved steps. Digital fiat will enable smoother implementation of monetary and fiscal policy; at the same time, they’ll also be onboarding entire countries into the digital asset economy, potentially spurring on greater adoption of crypto assets as a whole.



  • RH
    Robert H.
    7 February 2021 @ 21:03
    I hold Bitcoin but I wouldn't hold Bitcoin without holding physical gold and silver outside of the banking system. I also hold so-called scrap or junk silver coins as well. The reasons behind holding precious metals go back to what happened in Cyprus. Of course it's "The Bail-In!" Don't think it matters? Well, most G20 countries have it in their central banking laws. Bill Gates is buying up a lot of the best farmland and Microsoft takes Bitcoin. Think about that one.
  • AW
    Andrew W.
    31 January 2021 @ 15:29
    This interview missed 100% of the point of CBDCs, which is to enable behavioral economics and force selective policies. There is literally no other purpose to CBDCs.
  • rr
    richard r.
    25 January 2021 @ 14:37
    For anyone late to the party what is the simplest, most secure AND low cost way to get exposure to Bitcoin and other digital currencies? Asking for a friend. ;)
    • AW
      Andrew W.
      31 January 2021 @ 15:28
      Kraken is great. Learn how to self custody using a hardware wallet.
  • TV
    Tyrell V.
    30 January 2021 @ 16:40
    Great video but confusing the ontology of the 'concept of money' with the current conventional wisdom of how money currently works in the fiat CB standard is really a rookie error... it is a really big epistemological failing that keeps us where we are...
  • DK
    David K.
    26 January 2021 @ 01:36
    Ash, interesting discussion and excellent interview!! Well done.
  • DW
    Dean W.
    26 January 2021 @ 01:03
    Enjoyed the interview. The only think I take issue with is the effusive praise by the Block team for the Federal Reserve and statements about how incredibly brilliant the Fed people are and how they have continually "saved" us. the team seems uninformed of the degree to which the Fed's policies since the GFC have exacerbated wealth inequality in the US. One round of quantitative easing after 2008 would have been more than enough. The recession was over by summer 2009 and, if anything, subsequent rounds of quantitative easing not only further metastasized income inequality, but also misallocated capital and abetted reckless politicians via excessive deficit spending. Low rates and quantitative easing programs are particularly beneficial to the ultra-wealthy because they artificially boost asset values, especially for risk assets, and allow for cheap leverage. The ultra-wealthy can take advantage of record highs in the stock market while the asset-poor working class gets by on relatively stagnant hourly wages. Risk-averse middle-class retirees are forced to buy bonds with artificially low interest rates just to make ends meet or to put money into an increasingly volatile and overpriced stock market. So the Fed "saves" us by preferentially helping the wealthy few at the expense of 99% not so wealthy. And we're supposed to thank them? One of the insightful guests on RV put it best when they said - the Fed loves to implement policies that stimulate every conceivable type of inflation except wage inflation. the Feds actions continually make it more difficult for lower income people to scrape by in this economy. Something needs to change.
  • LS
    Lemony S.
    25 January 2021 @ 23:55
    Looking very professional here Ash, well done.
  • LS
    Lemony S.
    25 January 2021 @ 23:53
    What was the "inconvenient truth" about cryptos that RP was talking about?
  • PV
    Pietro V.
    25 January 2021 @ 14:12
    I am puzzled by the total the lack of reference to the geo-political motives behind China's drive to CBDC. China will be the first major economy to launch a "retail" CBDC simply because their imperative is to decouple from the SWIFT system. Since 2001 the US has weaponized the USD and a rising super-power cannot continue to be held hostage to the vagaries of US foreign policy for their raw materials and bilateral trade. China's CBDC is likely to be the beginning of the end for the USD role as the global reserve currency. The US may be able to delay the inevitable by co-opting the already thriving stable coins (ironically very popular in China). That is likely to be too much of a cognitive stretch for Washington's bureaucrats in the same way Nokia could not get to launch the smart phone ahead of Apple.
    • SO
      Steven O.
      25 January 2021 @ 23:51
      China's CBDC is undoubtedly far ahead of any US plans and will likely remain so because of the aged bureaucracy in the US. The US advantage may be its values relative to China's. Namely, the founding Enlightenment values of property rights and individual liberty. The US may be behind on the development front, but if they can build a CBDC that respects those values, while also embracing a right to privacy, China's surveillance CBDC will fail in the global marketplace. Even better, China will be forced to inject those US values into its currency in order to compete, which would be a win for global civil liberties. Additionally, that will then force the US to make their currency even MORE respective of civil liberties. A virtuous cycle. The other play is for the US to opt-out of the traditional currency game and embrace decentralized payment networks, much like they did with the internet. Jeremy Allaire discussed this scenario with Raoul several days ago. Maybe stable coins, maybe BTC on LN. Either way, it's dangerous to bet against open networks.
  • MH
    Muddshir H.
    25 January 2021 @ 05:24
    Great work Ash as always
    • AB
      Ash B. | Real Vision
      25 January 2021 @ 20:49
      Thanks, Muddshir.
  • jb
    joseph b.
    25 January 2021 @ 19:42
    I just watched the reincarnation of James Maynard Keynes in the form of Mike Rogers. Inflationary Central banks Terraformed the Plane" ?????????Really???????????? He has no clue what Bitcoin is or why it was created. What the inflationists missed completely is inflationary terraforming punishes those who wish to save for the future. it rewards speculators because the value of money depreciates . The USD is worth 98% less than it did in 1913. Also missed in the adoration of the tier monetary system is that those tier 2 a's like JP Morgan which serially gets fined for manipulating markets btw, have first access to that inflationary money at almost zero interest. Yeah he got into BTC in 2017 when it was a hot commodity. I suggest some research on the hidden tax implications of inflationary fiat currency. Screw the FED
  • SO
    Steven O.
    25 January 2021 @ 18:04
    The game theory of CBDC features collapses into: anonymized (like XMR), finite supply, and censorship immunity. Any CBDC that lacks one or more of those features will lose in the international markets relative to those that have all 3. Do any of you want to use China's surveillance coin? No. How about one that is instantly seize-able by the State, without a commercial banking intermediary? No. How about one with an infinite supply that steals your purchasing power over time? No. How about one with individualized (State sanctioned) interest rates for behavioral control? No. Finite supply, anonymized, censorship immune, and Universal Basic Interest Rate (UBIR) CBDCs will win. For more info on this game theory, I'm at @Bridge_Monetary and the Bridge Monetary Policy podcast.
  • ML
    Michael L.
    25 January 2021 @ 09:22
    Superb discussion. Great point about how the U.S. might rightfully be more cautious in creating a CBDC than smaller nations or economic misfits who have the most to gain and with less systemic risk; but, it's hard to imagine a U.S. CBDC not moving forward. What's not to like from a government perspective? (1) Granular control of 'retail' money (esp under conditions of neg interest rates, or even 'conditional air-dropped money'); (2) An IRS wet-dream; (3) Increase in the velocity of money; (4) Other governments are forging ahead, so need to stay on the front-foot internationally. Thx Ash / thx RV!