Sergio Cesaratto and Eladio Febrero, Private and Central Bank Digital Currencies: a storm in a teacup? A Post-Keynesian appraisal, Departamento de Análisis Económico y Finanzas de la UCLM, Documentos de Trabajo, DT 2022/1.
The emergence of private digital currencies (DCs) poses a threat to payment systems and monetary policy because they challenge all functions of money as we know them. In this paper we focus mainly on the banking and monetary policy issues raised by stablecoins and CBDC in the light of endogenous money theory. We begin by describing the current working of bank-centered payment systems. We next touch upon cryptoassets and focus on the domestic and international impact of stablecoins. We then deal with CBDC by discussing the pros and cons, their possible impact on monetary and banking policy and some international issues. We also discuss the CBDC presumed similarities with the “Chicago Plan” (or “narrow banking”). In terms of monetary policy, the impact of CBDC depends on the degree of disintermediation they would bring about in the banking system. At one extreme, if CBDC represent an e–surrogate for banknotes,
they do not entail any disturbance to existing banking and monetary policy. The other extreme of a full conversion of deposits into CBDC would radically change the working of the central bank interest rate policy. A limited migration of bank deposits into CBDC will not affect monetary policy, either based on the standard corridor or on the floor system. In all cases, the endogenous money creation by banks would not be affected in principle as long as the central bank automatically provides reserves when deposits are converted into CBDC. This may however require stricter controls by the central bank when it comes to bank lending.
Keywords: Stablecoins, CBDC, Endogenous money, narrow banking, payment system,
banking intermediation, financial instability
JEL Classifications: E40, E50, G10, G30, O30