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Blockchain technology is about to transform every trust-based interaction of our lives, from financial services to identity, from health care to our Internet of Things devices. In this podcast, host Laura Shin talks with industry pioneers across tech, financial services, health care, government and other sectors about how the blockchain and cryptocurrency will open up new opportunities for incumbents, startups and everyday people to interact more efficiently, directly and globally.

Oct 8, 2019

David Andolfatto, senior vice president at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, gives his thoughts on Facebook's Libra, including why regulatory issues will make it hard to compete with the US dollar, and why Bitcoin wouldn't have such issues. He also says, "who cares?" about the US dollar losing global reserve status, pointing out that many prosperous countries have currencies that don't function as global reserves. He tells us how he would design a central bank digital currency, and why, even if central banks enabled citizens to open accounts with them, thus bypassing commercial banks, it wouldn't drive banks out of business. We also cover how that could affect fractional reserve banking and credit creation, the People's Bank of China's soon-to-be-issued digital yuan, and why blockchains haven't yet substantially helped the unbanked, as they were originally touted to do.

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Episode links: 

St. Louis Federal Reserve:

David Andolfatto:

David's blog:

Letter from House Reps to Fed Chair Jerome Powell:

Talk on blockchain, cryptocurrency and central banks:

Blog post on cost efficiency of a centrally managed ledger:

David’s paper on the impact of central bank digital currency private banks:

Raskin and Yermack paper:

David on FedCoin: 

Philadelphia Federal Reserve banker Patrick Harker on a G20 CBDC being inevitable:

Related Unchained interview: Dong He and Yan Liu on central bank digital currencies: