Joint Discussion Paper Series in Economics 15-2017
Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoins may revolutionize the financial system by at least partially replacing intermediaries such as central banks and commercial banks. The blockchain technology enables users to transact on a peer-to-peer basis. This imposes a serious threat on the financial intermediaries as well as on monetary policy authorities. In this paper, we examine how well cryptocurrencies fulfill the functions of a fiat money and discuss the comparative advantages of cryptocurrencies. We proceed by exploring the implications of digital currencies for the concept and conduct of monetary policy.