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Redeemable Platform Currencies

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Listed:
  • Yang You
  • Kenneth S. Rogoff

Abstract

Can massive online retailers such as Amazon and Alibaba issue digital tokens that potentially compete with bank debit accounts? We explore whether a large platform’s ability to guarantee value and liquidity by issuing prototype digital tokens for in-platform purchases constitutes a significant advantage that could potentially be leveraged into wider use. Our central finding is that unless introducing tradability creates a significant convenience yield, platforms can potentially earn higher revenues by making tokens non-tradable. The analysis suggests that if platforms have any comparative advantage in issuing tradable tokens, it comes from other factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Yang You & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2019. "Redeemable Platform Currencies," NBER Working Papers 26464, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:26464
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation

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