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Demand for Payment Services and Consumer Welfare: The Introduction of a Central Bank Digital Currency

Using a two-stage model, we study the determinants of Canadian consumers’ choices of payment method at the point of sale. We estimate consumer preferences and adoption costs for various combinations of payment methods. We analyze how introducing a central bank digital currency would affect the market equilibrium.

A Uniform Currency in a Cashless Economy

Staff Analytical Note 2020-7 Walter Engert, Ben Fung
A number of questions can arise when considering the implications of a cashless society. This note considers whether cash is necessary for a uniform currency.

Technology Approach for a CBDC

In this note, we highlight a range of technical options and considerations in designing a contingent system for a central bank digital currency (CBDC) in Canada and explore how these options achieve stated public policy goals.

CBDC and Monetary Sovereignty

Staff Analytical Note 2020-5 Antonio Diez de los Rios, Yu Zhu
In an increasingly digitalized world, issuers of private digital currency can weaken central banks’ ability to stabilize the economy. By continuing to make central bank money attractive as a payment instrument in a digital world, a central bank digital currency (CDBC) could help to maintain a country’s monetary sovereignty.

CBDC and Monetary Policy

Staff Analytical Note 2020-4 Mohammad Davoodalhosseini, Francisco Rivadeneyra, Yu Zhu
Improving the conduct of monetary policy is unlikely to be the main motivation for central banks to issue a central bank digital currency (CBDC). While some argue that a CBDC could allow more complex transfer schemes or the ability to break below the zero lower bound, we find these benefits might be small or difficult to realize in practice.

2018 Merchant Acceptance Survey

Staff Analytical Note 2019-31 Kim Huynh, Gradon Nicholls, Mitchell Nicholson
In 2015, the Bank of Canada surveyed merchants and found that cash was nearly universally accepted (Fung, Huynh and Kosse 2017). Since 2015, retail payments in Canada have become increasingly digitalized, as many Canadians have adopted digital payment innovations like contactless cards and Interac e-Transfer.

2018 Bitcoin Omnibus Survey: Awareness and Usage

The Bank of Canada continues to use the Bitcoin Omnibus Survey (BTCOS) to monitor trends in Canadians’ awareness, ownership and use of Bitcoin. The most recent iteration was conducted in late 2018, following an 85 percent decline in the price of Bitcoin throughout the year.

Cashless Bank Branches in Canada

Staff Analytical Note 2019-29 Walter Engert, Ben Fung
Cashless or tellerless bank branches have proliferated in several countries in recent years. In a cashless bank branch, teller or counter services such as cash withdrawals, deposits and cheque-cashing are not available.

The Economics of Cryptocurrencies—Bitcoin and Beyond

Staff Working Paper 2019-40 Jonathan Chiu, Thorsten Koeppl
Since the creation of Bitcoin in 2009, over 2,000 cryptocurrencies have been issued. We evaluate how well a cryptocurrency functions as a payment system.

Explaining the Interplay Between Merchant Acceptance and Consumer Adoption in Two-Sided Markets for Payment Methods

Staff Working Paper 2019-32 Kim Huynh, Gradon Nicholls, Oleksandr Shcherbakov
Recent consumer and merchant surveys show a decrease in the use of cash at the point of sale. Increasingly, consumers and merchants have access to a growing array of payment innovations as substitutes for cash.

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