War On Cash Escalates: China Readies Digital Currency, IMF Says “Extremely Beneficial”

Remember when Bitcoin and its digital currency cohorts were slammed by authorities and written off by the elite as worthless? Well now, as the war on cash escalates, officials from The IMF to China are seeing the opportunity to control the world’s money through virtual (cash-less) currencies. Just as we warned most recently here, state wealth control is the goal and, as Bloomberg reports, The PBOC is targeting an early rollout of China’s own digital currency to “boost control of money” and none other than The IMF’s Christine Lagarde added that “virtual currencies are extremely beneficial.”

By way of background, as we explained previously, What exactly does a “war on cash” mean?

It means governments are limiting the use of cash and a variety of official-mouthpiece economists are calling for the outright abolition of cash. Authorities are both restricting the amount of cash that can be withdrawn from banks, and limiting what can be purchased with cash.

These limits are broadly called “capital controls.”

Why Now?

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Cash Withdrawal Limits and “Bank Holidays” Coming?

Collapsing commodities prices, erratic market turmoil and the bursting of Chinese bubbles are leading to a crisis in confidence in the economic system across the globe. The long-expected crisis to which the global financial and systemic crisis in 2008 may have been a mere prelude may be upon us.

Governments have no appetite for further bailouts. The EU states have passed legislation which will make the banks or rather unfortunate and unsuspecting depositors liable for the bank’s lending and speculative profligacy. Continue reading

Germany’s first Islamic bank opens in Frankfurt

A follow-up story from a previous post discussing the license being granted:

 

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Germany, home to 4 million Muslims, just got its first lender that adheres to Sharia law. Charging interest is prohibited, but some analysts see little difference to the way normal banks operate.

If, according to the Koran, trade is permitted but charging interest is the work of Satan, that would make most Western bankers more than a little devilish.

But tacking a fee onto the funds it lends out is not how Germany’s first Islamic bank, the Kuveyt Turk (KT) Bank, which opened in Frankfurt on Monday, will be making its money. Continue reading

The Death of Cash

Could negative interest rates create an existential crisis for money itself?

JPMorgan Chase recently sent a letter to some of its large depositors telling them it didn’t want their stinking money anymore. Well, not in those words. The bank coined a euphemism: Beginning on May 1, it said, it will charge certain customers a “balance sheet utilization fee” of 1 percent a year on deposits in excess of the money they need for their operations. That amounts to a negative interest rate on deposits. The targeted customers—mostly other financial institutions—are already snatching their money out of the bank. Which is exactly what Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon wants. The goal is to shed $100 billion in deposits, and he’s about 20 percent of the way there so far. Continue reading