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Rs. 5,000 note in Pakistan raises many eyebrows

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Islamabad: Mainly used by players who are extremely rich, the Rs 5,000 note has raised many eyebrows.

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credits: State Bank of Pakistan

 

An editorial “High-denomination notes” in the Dawn on Saturday said that the Rs.5,000 currency note is “the unlikely culprit in a number of high-profile conversations in the country today, and for good reason”.

“The note, issued in 2006, plays a key role in large cash transactions mainly of a speculative or unscrupulous nature. Some quarters in the State Bank argue that the note is essential to simplify the cash management operations of banks that require large volumes of currency notes in their sprawling network of bank branches, and that cash management on this scale using smaller denominations is too cumbersome,” it said.

 Who really needs and uses the Rs. 5,000 note?

“It’s rarely seen in retail transactions. Much of the demand for the note, which circulates mostly outside the banking system once issued by a branch or ATM machine, comes from players who settle large transactions in cash on a daily basis. This should automatically raise questions about the nature of their work,” it added.

The daily said it is easy to make the case that the currency note ought to be discontinued. “Large payments should be made through the banking system, and retail customers rarely need such high-denomination currency.”

(With inputs from IANS)

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As Bitcoin Turns 10, Its Investors Face Year-On-Year Loss

Investors who bet early on bitcoin and have stuck with it have faced a roller-coaster ride in its first decade.

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virtual currencies, bitcoin, investors
Bitcoin.com buttons are seen displayed on the floor of the Consensus 2018 blockchain technology conference in New York City, New York. VOA

Bitcoin was heading towards a year-on-year loss on Wednesday, its 10th birthday, the first loss since last year’s bull market, when the original and biggest digital coin muscled its way to worldwide attention with months of frenzied buying.

By 1300 GMT, bitcoin was trading at $6,263 on the BitStamp exchange, leaving investors who had bought it on Halloween 2017 facing yearly losses of nearly 3 percent.

A year ago, bitcoin closed at $6,443.22 as it tore towards a record high of near $20,000, hit in December.

virtual currencies, bitcoin, investors
People use a bitcoin ATM in Hong Kong. VOA

That run, fueled by frenzied buying by retail investors from South Korea to the United States, pushed bitcoin to calendar-year gains of over 1,300 percent.

Ten years ago, Satoshi Nakamoto, bitcoin’s still-unidentified founder, released a white paper detailing the need for an online currency that could be used for payments without the involvement of a third party, such as a bank.

Traders and market participants said the Halloween milestone was inevitable, given losses of around 70 percent from bitcoin’s peak and the continuing but incomplete shift towards investment by mainstream financial firms.

virtual currencies, bitcoin, investors
Transactions in cryptocurrencies occur the same way that you make transactions using any other fiat currency. pixabay

“The value mechanisms of crypto and bitcoin today are based more on underlying tech than hype and FOMO (fear of missing out),” said Josh Bramley, head trader at crypto wealth management firm Blockstars.

Growing use of blockchain – the distributed ledger technology that underpins bitcoin – is now powering valuations of the digital currency, he said, cautioning that some expectations for widespread use have not yet materialized.

Others said improvements to infrastructure such as custody services may allow mainstream investors who are wary of buying bitcoin to take positions.

virtual currencies, bitcoin, investors
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and worldwide payment system. Wikimedia Commons

“We see behind closed doors financial and non-financial institutions beavering away to create the infrastructure,” said Ben Sebley, head of brokerage at NKB Group, a blockchain advisory and investment firm.

Bitcoin has endured year-on-year losses before, according to data from CryptoCompare, most recently in 2015.

Also Read: Climate Change Efforts Can Be Nullified Due To Bitcoin Production: Scientists

Retail investors still account for a strong proportion of trading, market players said.

Investors who bet early on bitcoin and have stuck with it have faced a roller-coaster ride in its first decade. Many told Reuters they are optimistic that they are still onto a winner. (VOA)