Harambe: Bloomberg: PBOC Governor Says 4 Million Transactions so Far in Digital Yuan
More than 2 billion yuan ($299.07 million) has been spent using China’s new digital currency so far in 4 million separate transactions, Yi Gang, the governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), said on Monday.
China’s digital yuan is one of the most advanced central bank digital currency (CBDC) initiatives underway around the world, as authorities globally respond to the threat from private currencies such as bitcoin or Facebook’s FB.O Libra.
CBDCs are designed to replace physical cash with a digital currency giving the holder a direct claim on the central bank.
China’s version follows a two-tier approach, with the PBOC issuing the digital yuan but commercial banks and big tech companies having a role in distributing it to consumers.
China has launched several pilot schemes for the digital yuan, most recently in the southern city of Shenzhen last month, when the PBOC gave 200 yuan ($29.75) each to 50,000 consumers selected in a lottery to spend in selected stores.
Yi, who was speaking at Hong Kong’s “Fintech Week” conference, said that the 2 billion yuan had been spent in pilot initiatives in four cities via 12,000 payment scenarios.
Harambe: CNBC: Oil prices slip 3% as Europe widens lockdowns … Brent Crude $37.27
Oil prices fell more than 3% on Monday on worries a swathe of coronavirus lockdowns across Europe will weaken fuel demand, while traders braced for turbulence during the U.S. presidential election week.
Brent crude for January was at $37.03 a barrel, down 91 cents, or 2.4%,, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate fell $1.06, or 3%, to $34.72 a barrel. Brent fell as much as 5.8% and WTI as much as 6% in early trade, hitting their lowest levels since May.
Countries across Europe have reimposed lockdown measures aimed at slowing COVID-19 infection rates which have accelerated in the continent in the past month.
“The lockdown measures announced by UK and by Italy are just adding to the deteriorating European situation,” Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney said.
“A lot of traders are now looking at the U.S. and their rising infection rates and wondering if Europe is providing the model for what will happen in the U.S. in the coming weeks.”
Oil pared some losses after Japan’s export orders grew for the first time in two years, China’s factory activity accelerated at the fastest pace in nearly a decade in October. More manufacturing data is expected from the eurozone and the United States.
Still, concerns about weakening demand and rising supplies from OPEC and the United States caused oil prices to fall for a second straight month in October, with WTI falling 11% and Brent 8.5%.