This week, “Opinionated” co-hosts Ben Schiller, Anna Baydakova and Danny Nelson are talking to Christopher Giancarlo, former chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and David Treat, senior managing director at Accenture, the co-founders of the Digital Dollar Project .
The Digital Dollar Project recently announced plans for a slew of pilot projects that will show what the tokenized U.S. dollar can and can’t do. It’s not clear yet exactly what those pilots will be.
The global race for leadership in central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) started with China charging forward with its digital yuan project and all other nations rushing to catch up. Giancarlo believes the U.S. shouldn’t miss a chance to set the standards for CBDCs globally. But is it enough to issue another CBDC to stop the digital yuan’s expansion?
Another important concern regarding CBDCs is privacy. Giancarlo and Treat believe the U.S. government will ensure the privacy of citizens’ transactions, in keeping with the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment. But what if the government is not the best guardian of personal information? We discuss the privacy concerns of CBDCs at length during this episode.
Finally, who needs CBDCs if we already have dollar-pegged stablecoins, some of which are regularly audited and regulated by the U.S.? Giancarlo does not fully trust the stablecoin issuers on the market now: “Who is the holder of a reserve bank account? What if the holder of that account absconds with the money?” he asked.
We discuss central bank digital currencies, and ask if we need this new form of money and how they will compete and integrate with private-sector initiatives, including USD-backed stablecoins.
Find Christopher Giancarlo and David Treat on Twitter: @giancarloMKTS and @DBTreat.
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