Faster Payments? Startup Pitches Federal Reserve Group on Cryptocurrency

A new Federal Reserve report highlights creative proposals for how the central bank might adapt to changes in technology.

Jul 21, 2017 at 8:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 6:45 a.m. UTC

A specialized task force set up by the U.S. Federal Reserve has received a slew of new proposals outlining how it might utilize technology to speed up services.

In total, 16 proposals from various payment providers were submitted to the Faster Payments Task Force, convened by the Federal Reserve in 2015 as a way to channel strategic thinking on how it could update its processes and technology.

As outlined in a new report, five submissions incorporated some form of blockchain technology, including filings by companies Eccho, Hub Culture, Kalypton Group, Nanopay Corporation, Ripple, Thought Matrix Consulting and Xalgorithms.

But perhaps the most notable published is by Wingcash, which goes as far as to propose that the Federal Reserve issue its own cryptocurrency.

The proposal states:

"(WingCash Faster Payment Network is) a software platform that would be owned and operated by the Federal Reserve and the Governing Organization. The Federal Reserve would issue digital currency (digital Fed notes) and is tied to the Internet domain (Fednotes.com)."

Written by Bradley Wilkes, who according to the company's website is the founder and CEO of WingCash, the proposal, if ever adopted, would find the US central bank taking steps toward embracing the long-discussed "Fedcoin" concept long used as an illustration of the technology and its potential.

While central banking authorities from countries like U.K., Russia and China have indicated interests in issuing their own cryptocurrencies, this may be the first time a proposal has been addressed directly to the Federal Reserve.

Still, the report notes the inclusion of the proposal should not "imply any endorsement or recommendation" on behalf of the Federal Reserve.

Disclosure: CoinDesk is a subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which has an ownership stake in Ripple.

Federal Reserve image via Shutterstock

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