New White Paper, Who Dis?
Few announcements sparked more discourse than Facebook’s unveiling of the Libra project last summer. After months of regulatory scrutiny, the Libra Association is out with a new white paper detailing revisions to its original proposal in hopes of creating a “simple global payment system and financial infrastructure that empowers billions of people.” Among the notable changes, three stuck out as particularly meaningful to Libra’s long-term viability.
First, the Association is introducing single-currency stablecoins (e.g. USD, EUR, GBP, etc.), each of which will be backed by a reserve of “cash or cash equivalents and very short-term government securities denominated in that currency and issued by the home country of that currency.” These stablecoins will only be minted or burned in response to demand for each coin, resulting in no new net money creation (the white paper goes on to say it is the team’s hope that central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) will eventually be “directly integrated with the Libra network” as well).
Second, the Libra Coin (LBR) is likely to function as a smart contract that “aggregates single-currency stablecoins using fixed nominal weights” rather than having it backed directly by a diverse pool of reserve assets (the paper references the IMF’s Special Drawing Rights (SDR) as a proxy for its potential weighting