Bitcoin and Beyond: The Possibilities and the Pitfalls of Virtual Currencies
6:15 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. | Monday, March 31, 2014 - (Reception 6:15 - 7 p.m., presentation 7 - 8:30 p.m.)
In recent months, Bitcoin and other virtual currencies have fueled the public's imagination as Bitcoin's value against the U.S. dollar skyrocketed and as more and more merchants announced they would begin accepting it for payment. Even Bitcoin ATMs have begun to pop up around the country. However, the exchange-based and nonregulated nature of virtual currencies makes them vulnerable to volatility, speculative trading and has led to the perception that they can easily be used for illegal transactions. Several countries have either banned their use or issued warnings. What exactly are Bitcoin and its main competitors, and how do they work? Are they the first wave of a new paradigm in payments or just a technological flash in the pan?
David Andolfatto, a vice president at the St. Louis Fed, will address these and other questions at the St. Louis Fed's next Dialogue with the Fed on Monday, March 31, 2014. The dialogue begins with a light reception at 6:15 p.m., with the program beginning at 7 p.m. Complimentary parking will be available in the Bank's parking garage.