What Does the Future of Money Hold?


Digital means of payment are increasingly shaping the financial world. Decentralized crypto-currencies have not only gained more widespread acceptance as a commercial payment, they have also become a popular investment opportunity. Online payment providers and FinTech start-ups not backed by traditional banks are counting record-breaking numbers of users and subscribers. In developing countries, mobile payments have gained unprecedented acceptance among the populations, slowly edging out cash payments.

Seeing more agile tech companies develop digital means of payment, central banks may be pressed to issue public digital currencies in order to maintain control of financial regulation and monetary policy. While both the European Central Bank and the Federal Reserve are investigating such e-currencies, China already has put their version to limited use. At the same time and to much controversy, private companies such as Facebook are at the brink of launching their own digital currency. With increasing adoption, both private and public actors will also have to address potential cyber security risks and privacy issues. The traditional banking sectors on both sides of the Atlantic will have to adapt and work together in light of the fast-paced developments of the world’s monetary systems.


Michael Miebach, Chief Executive Officer, Mastercard

Burkhard Balz, Member of the Executive Board, Deutsche Bundesbank

Julia Friedlander, Boyden Gray Senior Fellow and Deputy Director, GeoEconomics Center, Atlantic Council, moderated the discussion.

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