The Federal Reserve is taking the next step in weighing whether to launch a U.S. digital currency, issuing a report Thursday that explores the potential benefits and drawbacks of such a move without indicating where it will land.
The central bank is asking the public to provide feedback on the question over the next 120 days. And it said that in any event, it would only seek to create a digital currency with “clear support” from both the executive branch and Congress.
“We look forward to engaging with the public, elected representatives, and a broad range of stakeholders as we examine the positives and negatives of a central bank digital currency in the United States,” Federal Reserve Chair Jerome H. Powell said in a statement accompanying the report.
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Top Fed officials themselves so far have appeared divided on the matter. Powell last year said the project would need to demonstrate “clear and tangible benefits that outweigh any costs and risks.”