Europe's first cross-border trial of central bank digital currency payments has been described as a success by the central banks of Switzerland and France, though they said it would not immediately lead to issuance of CBDCs. Project Jura, named after the mountains between the two countries, is the latest in a series of CBDC trials conducted by central banks keen to rebut the threat from crypto assets. "Project Jura confirms that a well-designed wholesale CBDC can play a critical role as a safe and neutral settlement asset for international financial transactions," said Benoît Coeuré, head of the Innovation Hub at the Bank for International Settlements.
The dollar retreated Tuesday as fresh concerns about the impact of the omicron coronavirus variant prompted a rush into the safe havens, the Japanese yen and the Swiss franc. In prepared testimony ahead of his appearance later in the Senate Banking Committee, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the omicron variant of the coronavirus poses risks to both sides of the central bank’s mandate to achieve stable prices and maximum employment. “The recent rise in COVID-19 cases and the emergence of the omicron variant pose downside risks to employment and economic activity and increased uncertainty for inflation,” Powell said in prepared testimony released Monday.
ZURICH (Reuters) -The Swiss National Bank is no longer standing in the way of the franc's appreciation, according to data published on Monday, in an eye-catching change in view of the safe-haven currency's rise to its highest against the euro in more than six years. The central bank's apparent stance will confound investors who have grown used to the SNB's mantra that it would fight tooth and nail with negative interest rates and foreign currency purchases to restrain the Swissie. The level is not far off the 1:1 against the euro the franc briefly reached after the SNB's last policy shift in Jan. 2015.