finance risk - Page 4

  • Europe sets first step into combating fraud and taxevasion

    The European Parliament voted today to create public registries in EU member countries listing the real, flesh-and-blood owners of companies and trusts. The measure will crack down on individuals and companies that hide assets in secretive offshore entities, which have often been linked to tax evasion, money laundering and corruption. The use of offshore havens by prominent European politicians and business leaders was revealed last year by ICIJ’s Offshore Leaks investigation. “Crucial facilitators of illicit money flows are secretive corporate structures operating in and through secrecy jurisdiction, often also referred to as tax havens,” state the proposed new rules.

    The measure would amend the EU’s current anti-money laundering rules, and was approved today by two key parliamentary committees, the committees on Economic and Monetary Affairs and Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs. The changes will be voted on by the full European Parliament in March. If the rules are approved – the committee vote was 45 to 1 in their favor – it will then fall to European member states to implement them. So far, only the UK has formally pledged to create a public ownership registry of companies.

  • Argentine stops online shopping unless you pay taxes at the border

    In a bid to halt the hemorrhaging of foreign currency from its central bank (reserves fell by 30 percent in 2013), Argentina’s government has decided to make it harder for Argentines to shop online on international websites. Shoppers will now have to sign a declaration and take it to a customs office to receive their packages. Trips to the customs office typically last three to four hours.

    this will be quite a revolution but I am afraid that some countries will be inspired by this

    the problem that some countries for some products it is possible to evade taxes by bying stuff online or get it at much lower prices (especially if inflation is skyrocketing)

    and Argentine like 4 other BRICS countries are now moving as fast to the brink as they were going to the Sun as examples for our 'old and too social and too expensive' economies

  • the secret TPP tradetalks will be anything but green (even if they say otherwise)

    the TPP tradetalks are secret (as the European Commission wants its tradetalks with the US to be) but the documents are being leaked to Wikileaks on a permanent basis. Now they have published the environmental chapters if anything really environmental is enclosed in it is another matter (if there is any matter in this chapter worth discussing)

    "WikiLeaks released the secret draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Environment Chapter and the corresponding Chairs' Report. The TPP transnational legal regime would cover 12 countries initially and encompass 40 per cent of global GDP and one-third of world trade. The Environment Chapter has long been sought by journalists and environmental groups. The released text dates from the Chief Negotiators' summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013.


    The Environment Chapter covers what the Parties propose to be their positions on: environmental issues, including climate change, biodiversity and fishing stocks; and trade and investment in 'environmental' goods and services. It also outlines how to resolve enviromental disputes arising out of the treaty's subsequent implementation. The draft Consolidated Text was prepared by the Chairs of the Environment Working Group, at the request of TPP Ministers at the Brunei round of the negotiations.


    When compared against other TPP chapters, the Environment Chapter is noteworthy for its absence of mandated clauses or meaningful enforcement measures. The dispute settlement mechanisms it creates are cooperative instead of binding; there are no required penalties and no proposed criminal sanctions. With the exception of fisheries, trade in 'environmental' goods and the disputed inclusion of other multilateral agreements, the Chapter appears to function as a public relations exercise.

    You will find there the documents, analysis and the other leaked documents of these example trade negotiations that the European Commission would like to set up with the US (and which already have an insight in what the US would like to see in it)

  • 'Wolf of Wall Street' is a very stupid film

    I know it is being called by official film critics and others as one of the best films made and has high marks and hype all over the place - and not showing it in the cinema's makes people even more curious

    but what does the film wants us to show

    * that wall street is full of crooks who take their clients to be sheep to be slaughtered

    * that if you can sell anything, you can also sell stock because it is the same kind of talk - even if you don't know what you are selling

    * that the office culture in these trading rooms is just plain madness and that those salespeople are just brainless crooks without any ethics who go along and join the atmosphere

    * that people with such amount of money are no good for anything decent and have no respect whatsoever and think that anything or anyone can be bought

    * that in fact they are very silly people you should in fact feel sorry for

    * that after some punishment in luxury they still have a good life and go around the world learning people to sell stock like they used to do

    and this whole message - if there is one - is just sucked up by the continuous stream of sex, orgies, drugs and plain stupidity - not counting the number of unnecessary fuck words

    here is a better list of films to watch about financial affairs

  • in fact bitcoin has gone underground in China

    these decisions are clear

    "On Wednesday, BTC China, the country’s largest Bitcoin exchange, said it had been told to stop accepting deposits in Chinese currency. The announcement was the latest in a series of steps that have restricted the ability to buy and use Bitcoins in China. The country’s leading third-party payment processors were told on Monday by the central bank to stop accepting the currency, according to Chinese news reports. And on Dec. 5, the People’s Bank of China and other regulators ordered traditional financial institutions in China to stop Bitcoin transactions.

    If you take all those decisions together - as in this article

    than it is clear that you can't exchange your chinese money into bitcoins (except on the black market) and you can't disposit your bitcoins or transfer them through Chinese financial institutions (which they were doing on an increasing wider scale)

    China has a big parallell financial market of unofficial loans and accounts between enterprises and people and that fact has been worrying the national financial and economic decisionmakers as much as the international observers and institutions as the biggest risk to the Chinese financial system (if for example number of these enterprises can't pay those unofficial loans back so that the enterprises who lent that money can't pay back themselves the money they lent from others and so on.....)

    Bitcoin was not only jumping in that market but it gave also the possibility to make quick much money (as the value of the money by enormously increasing demand in China was increasing by the hour) and to exchange it internationally without any government controls so you could get your hands on international currencies you would otherwise not have been able to amass

    and the volatility of the Bitcoin was only increasing the risk of the parallell financial market crashing faster than the domino's can fall without any means for the Chinese government to intervene - or anyone else for that matter because bitcoin is totally outside any monetary control

    the longer the chinese would have waited to intervene, the bigger the problem would have become and if bitcoin would have become to popular (even only in the middle class black money market) the risks of protests  would become too great while the need to control the beast would become even greater making it an impossible choice

    it also shows clearly to the political leadership in China and to the international community that the Chinese financial infrastructure is too rigid and has too many unknowns to be compared to our financial systems - even if they broke totally down a few years ago. Untill now that weakness was very well hidden. The weakness that China can't liberate its financial markets and make the financial transactions free among people, industries and countries because chinese money only thinks about leaving once the opportunity is there, even a very flawed one like bitcoin because if you have used bitcoin to get your money out of China or out of the Chinese financial system you are really very desperate to take such risks (to lose much or even everything)

  • the bitcoin protocol can be used to built an universal digital currency

    this is one example of how normal procedures and arbitration can be built in the process

    if one accept that your individual anonimity and the illegal transfers are not the main raison why you use bitcoin

    if we call for the closure and control of many bitcoin businesses because they are as hazardous as bad banks and financial services online, this has nothing to do with bitcoin an sich, but because it is being abused for something it wasn't intended to and that instead one shouild concentrate on builiding a legitimate bitcoin framework that is not the playground of shortsellers, thiefs and speculators

    " is a new site (announced yesterday on Hacker News) that facilitates setting up multisignature transactions. Bitcoin client support for multisignature transactions is limited, so the site helps create addresses that conform to the m-of-n specifications. At no point does the site have access to the funds in the multisignature address.


    In addition, Bitrated provides a marketplace where people can advertise their arbitration services. Users are able to set up transactions using arbitrators both from the site or from anywhere else. The entire project is open source, so if you want to set up a competing directory, go for it.


    What excites me most about the decentralized arbitration afforded by multisignature transactions is that it could be the beginnings of a Common Law for the Internet. The plain, ordinary Common Law developed as the result of competing courts that issued opinions basically as advertisements of how fair and impartial they were. We could see something similar with Bitcoin arbitration. If arbitrators sign their transactions with links to and a cryptographic hash of a PDF that explains why they ruled as they did, we could see real competition in the articulation of rules. Over time, some of these articulations could come to be widely accepted and form a body of Bitcoin precedent. I look forward to reading the subsequent Restatements.


    Multisignature transactions are just one of the many innovations buried deep in the Bitcoin protocol that have yet to be widely utilized. As the community matures and makes full use of the protocol, it will become more clear that Bitcoin is not just a currency but a platform for financial innovation.

    so the government agencies looking at the bitcoin protocol should consider this kind of bitcoin, not the far far west way of doing things right now ( a kind of goldrush chaos)

  • Time for authorities to intervene in the bitcoin speculative bubble

    If you look at these numbers of today than you will see that the bitcoin bubble was a typical example of organised shortselling speculation that was intensified by megaphonereporting (just publishing the hype and non-critical blablabla without any fundamental critical thoughts)

    if this would have happened with a normal stock or financial product the authorities would intervene - they now are just warning and only the Chinese are taking concrete steps to stop the flow of this speculative digital currency - which is also the reason why the currency is doomed as an alternative currency if it doesn't find another country where it could be used as a parallell currency. But even this is a problem because as a parallell currency it should give the stability that the normal currency of that country can't give. And even if you would want to use it to make transactions you can only use it for immediate transactions because you have no idea whatsoever how much it will be worth in an hour, let's say in the days ahead And even if you can know it, which exchange market will you use because the difference between the different exchange markets are so enormous that it looks more like a panicking market than something that is suitable for business.

    Let's stop the pretending. Close them down because if you let them survive - as so-called businesses you are just giving the impression by not doing anything that this is a legitimate business which it is absolutely NOT. You could start by closing down those exchanges that don't have enough volume to be able to have a good pricesetting and so can limit the influences of a few buys or sells on the price and the averages

    warning people is not enough, otherwise we would recall cars, close restaurants and bad banks

    this graphic from for the US dollar to bitcoin exchanges show us the differences between the biggest and the smaller exchanges

    you should also keep in mind that the bitcoin was not coined for this

    it was to make it possible for people to make a small donation to wikileaks without getting arrested and the value would have been a few dollars or euro's

    this is how low it can ultimately fall and everybody who has bought bitcoins at that  price it selling them now

  • IBM first firm to be sued for risking to lose parts of the non-US market by bowing to the NSA

    According to Reuters, the Louisiana Sheriffs' Pension and Relief Fund is suing the technology giant's CEO Virginia Rometty and CFO Mark Loughridge for failing to reveal the risk of tying the company to the NSA.


    In November, the Center for Strategic Studies in Washington noted that IBM, along with Cisco and Microsoft, appeared to be stonewalled by China in response to media reports that US companies were aiding the NSA.


    IBM reported a 22 percent revenue loss from China in October, and a 4 percent drop in its Q3 profits. In September, Microsoft also noted that China is its weakest market.

    it is the first time after the first estimations from the US technologyfirms themselves that the financial losses that they are enduring are becoming concrete and that these are being felt by their investors like a risk (a risk being everything that can influence badly your performance or worth)

    which means in fact that if a firm wants to cooperate more closely with the US or other intelligence services than they are legally obliged to do (and which is no risk as long as only targeted data is involved) they should inform their shareholders first

    and I wouldn't start changing US hardware by Chinese or Russian and I wouldn't call any of them as democratic societies that are outraged by the espionage on their citizens without due process....

  • it is from an US economist that you must read this analysis of the Eurozone....

    Europe’s non-eurozone surplus countries – Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, and Norway (all of which tie their exchange rates to the euro to some degree) – magnify this global imbalance. Northern Europe – including these four countries and Germany, the Netherlands, and Austria – is running a massive current-account surplus of about $550 billion. Meanwhile, China’s surplus is unlikely to exceed $150 billion this year. In fact, the highest level that China’s annual surplus has ever reached was around $400 billion in 2007-2008 – when the US was poised to introduce trade sanctions against the country, because it viewed this imbalance as a threat to the stability of the US and the world economy.


    What is most problematic about the eurozone’s situation is that unemployment in some of the crisis countries – Spain and Greece – remains above 20%. These countries are trying to achieve a difficult “internal devaluation” – that is, a reduction in their domestic unit labor costs relative to the eurozone’s stronger economies – while the overall eurozone surplus caused by Northern Europe puts upward pressure on the exchange rate, undermining their competitiveness outside the monetary union.


    Spain and Greece have managed to achieve an internal devaluation of about 5% this year vis-à-vis Germany, but their competitiveness vis-à-vis the US and dollar-linked countries has not improved, because the euro has appreciated by more than 5% against the dollar. And, indeed, the euro should appreciate, because the eurozone as a whole is now running a large current-account surplus.


    One can only pity the Southern European countries. They should almost thank the French for their inability to impose effective austerity measures and thereby still run a small current-account deficit, which has prevented the eurozone surplus from becoming even larger.


    But an abundance of pity alone will not help. Northern European countries, which have ample room to increase wages and implement expansionary policies, must do so. This would directly benefit Northern European citizens themselves, while helping to keep the euro down and stimulate growth and adjustment in Southern Europe and the global economy as a whole.

    just as there are different economic and financial situations in the US between their states we don't have in the Eurozone a single economy and can't have a single economic policy although we have a single monetarian policy - which can't ever be as good to all the different economic situations in all the different member states .... but contrary to the US the European Commission doesn't understand that an economic policy is not about policies anc correctness but about people and in our case about whole generations

    but after reading this, you just wonder what are the options if one doesn't want to aid the other states-regions with financial and economic help (which is not loans at high interest rates)and how will Germany react because they profit the most from the current situation which makes the European elections next year all the more interesting and risky.

  • some in China dream of using bitcoin as an economic weapon against the US

    If China successfully aids the proliferation of bitcoin, the implications on the global currency system could be monumental. Rather than having to use USD as an intermediary currency or establish swap lines to support international trade, a world conducting trade with bitcoin would mean the USD currently used for this purpose would be leaked as additional supply in the Forex markets, driving down the value of USD and driving up borrowing rates for the US. This change, on a large scale, would drastically accelerate the effects of the inflationary policies already taken up by the Federal Reserve. A significant inflationary trend in USD could potentially create a devastating cycle as global banks looking to preserve their wealth seek alternative reserve currencies, even further reducing the dollar’s value.

    but they seem to forget a few things

    the biggest fear of inflation is in China, not in the US

    Bitcoin is used in China as an internal investment (to bypass the governmental controls and as another way of shadowbanking which is the main monetary problem in China) and to get money out of the country or expand its holdings in real-estate without leaving an official trail (landgrab) and probably corruption

    another thing is that the security of the bitcoin software and code is nearly worthless compared to the systems installed by the banks and the monetary exchanges and it is based upon virtual trust (and not central authorities with controlling agencies and guarantees) so it would be easy for a group of official hackers to hack big parts of the systems, steal big chunks of money and get it all spread out on the web so that nobody would trust his real money with this virtual 'coin'. People are very particular with real money, they panick more quickly and most of the exchanges don't have enough money to repay all the deposits.

    the money has lost 50% of its value in the last three days, if this happens with real money it would be chaos and for many people it will be real money they will have lost

    so if I was the US, I would say to China, You wanne use Bitcoin as an economic weapon, go ahead 'make my day' and send out the NSA to win this war without any casualty in a few hours or so

  • see in five minutes why the bitcoin bubble is totally crazy in three numbers

    1. ook at this life bitcoin to dollar convertor

    there are not two exchanges at the same rate in the next 20 seconds and the differences may be several dollars or more

    one minute afterwards it was already 704 Euro which is 10 euro less in 1 minute

    yesterday it was more than 1000 dollars for a bitcoin now it staying around 951

    someone who uses the tactics of shortselling here would make millions in a day

    2. The speculative bubble of bitcoin is different for each currency

    3. If youi trust the bitcoin exchanges, than just give me your money because you don't know how to handle it

    "Consequently, prominent exchanges are often located in countries with loose regulations. But being outside of the world's financial centers means transferring cash the old way. Cashing out of BTC-e, a popular exchange that trades Bitcoin and an assortment of altcoins including Litecoin, requires not only getting your money out of your account but also out of Bulgaria.


    And since they’re poorly regulated, service can be unpredictable. Without needing to follow strict reserve requirements, Bitcoin exchanges are notoriously cash poor. It’s not uncommon to wait months to withdraw money from Mt. Gox due to a “large backlog,” which is one reason in particular why prices on Mt. Gox are generally 10 percent higher. Rather than cash out, impatient users are forced to buy Bitcoins so they can send them to another exchange to sell.


    But trading one shoddily operated exchange for another can still pose its own problems. Bitcoin itself is only four years old. Financial institutions are built on trust and take years to mature. The New York Stock Exchange has had nearly two centuries to work things out. As BTC China’s CEO Bobby Lee pointed out, half of all Bitcoin exchanges will close within a year of operation with the average lifespan being about 380 day

    have a look at all the exchanges that have closed down recently

    and they all have different prices varying in the wildest sense

    now look at the price in Euro in the first average value of Bitcoin now

  • first shot into the bitcoin speculative bubble

    bitcoin will be killed by the speculation whatever the ideological or technical reasons and advantages of the currency

    one of the main reasons for the speculation is that the Chinese have no other opportunity to harvest their black market money and to trade propriety without government control

    it looked for a moment as if the Chinese government was just standing by and not intervening which in a dictatureship means that it is allowed for the moment

    as the volumes increased - also because the value of one bitcoin increased - it became clear that millions of dollars were being traded daily and that it was possible that even firms and banks were now using bitcoin to evade the official regulations and controls

    the Chinese government has now given banks - and firms (mostly in state hands) a clear interdiction to use bitcoins

    private citizens may use bitcoins but are their own risk and would you want to take a risk like this

    it is also not clear what will happen with all the bitcoins that are now already in the (black) budgets of the Chinese firms and banks. It is a dictatorship so they may be very pressed today to start selling their bitcoins - even at lower prices as they preferred to stay alive or keep their job

    there are also other stories about people losing bitcoins when they dispose of harddisks, people losing wallets with bitcoins and several national bank and monetary authorities warning against the bitcoin bubble that could burst as quick as it was hyped to the stars

  • a new way to close down illegal webshops : steal the bitcoins

    it was probably not a police operation but it could later become one

    "The Sheep Marketplace, like the Silk Road, was accessible via the Tor network and let people buy drugs and other illegal items through its pages. In the message posted to the site's opening page, the Sheep Marketplace's operator said it had shut down following the theft on 21 November of 5,400 bitcoins - £3.3m at current exchange rates.


    "Your money, our provisions, all was stolen," reads the message.


    The site's operator had been trying to "resolve" the situation since the theft took place but had failed and had decided to shut down the site as a result. He added that any remaining bitcoins would be distributed to members who had provided an emergency address to which they could be sent.-

    it is an old credo of the police nowadays : follow and hit the money and you will hurt them very badly even if they never go to court or got off lightly

    and the anonimity of bitcoins is another time abandoned by forwarded addresses :)

    your bitcoins privacy or your wealth security : it can't be both

  • why you should not keep your bitcoins online in a wallet now (security is unconfirmed)

    Since the hacks, BIPS — which offers a free online wallet for storing Bitcoin — has been telling bitcoin owners that they should really be storing large quantities of the digital currency offline, where it can't be hacked. "Web wallets are like a regular wallet that you carry cash in and not meant to keep large amounts in," Kris Henriksen, BIPS founder, writes in a forum post. "Please be advised that attacks are not isolated to us and if you are storing larger amounts of coins with any third party you may want to find alternative storage solutions as soon as possible."

    and everyday you will lose a bit more money because it is worth more for now

    and a thousand bitcoins is now one million dollars

    I wouldn't walk around with that kind of money and it wouldn't be in a virtual account but in a real place

    it looks to me that the bitcoin financial exchange places need controls that are as strict as those for the normal financial exchanges. You can't have it both ways. At one side being treated as a normal currency and at the same time not having the same controls and standards as a normal currency.

  • if this is not a (very recent) speculation against Bitcoin - than you better buy bitcoins

    except if you believe the hype by the people who have bitcoins or are investing in bitcoin services

    or except if the Chinese are still buying it as the only alternative free money without the same governmental controls and limitations and taxations (so the moment the Chinese firewall blocks Bitcoin than.......)

    but if you want to speculate against the transparancy of Chinese politics ........

    oh yes and play with your own money and don't come telling that you are too big to fail and so on .......

  • Stolen data from HSBC can be used as evidence says Geneva Court

    GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Bank data stolen by HSBC ex-employee Hervé Falciani may be used as evidence in a court, the Geneva cour de cassation has ruled. The court is the canton’s high court whose job is not to review the details of cases but rather to verify the interpretation of the law.


    In the Falciani case and in talks with German authorities as well as in some recent treaties the Swiss government has insisted that stolen data cannot be used, but the according to the cantonal cour de cassation, under criminal law, evidence may not be set aside because it has been obtained by illegal means.

    this means that the argument that the information was stolen and can't be used in court or by the administrations to get those fraudsters to pay their taxes and eventually their fines is not valid anymore as even the highest court in the coutry where the bank is based and which is known to be very protective of fraudsters under the argument of bank privacy

    this is very good news for the other European governments who can know use these data without any legal problem - even if it was to pressure the fraudsters to compromise without a trial and pay just the fine (as they are more sure to lose such a trial which their lawyers said and thought untill now

    it means for any bank or financial institution that has private clients or funds that it will have to be sure 100000 % percent that nobody can walk away with these data or can break the encryption within the first 10 years (after which the data are judicially worthless) - and yes you can do that (seperating technical and data-access in databases like Oracle, encrypting data, data leakage prevention and just simple isolation architectures)

  • crowdsourcing consultancy work : trying to connect the intelligent dots


    but in the end it is a lot of people doing the work that takes a lot of expensive time at non-guaranteed wages while some better paid permanent consultants try to organize all that

    off course it is interesting if one wants to have a very international, cross-cultural, cross-religious and corss-political viewpoint but only on the condition that they stay factual and that opinions are expressed in length so that all the possible reasons and arguments and facts and ifs are mentioned

    everybody can tweet an opinion but only few know to explain its reasons to every other person

  • playing 150.000 million dollars with the bitcoin gamble on a gambling site

    Someone—it's impossible to tell who—transferred 194,993.50000004 BTC Friday. That's about $144,295,190, using the conversion rate of the Internet's most popular exchange service, Mt. Gox.


    To put that into perspective, that's about 1.6 percent of all bitcoins in existence.


    Because Bitcoin is pseudonymous, it's easy to tell a user's transaction history but almost impossible to tell who that user is unless he or she wants to come forward. According to the account’s transaction history, it has previously been used to wager on, a Bitcoin gambling site.

    which is difficult because on that site there is no payout of that order - except if it is their own moneytransfer or a hidden one (to evade taxes for eample)

    the other solution is that a bitcoin exchange was moving its money around ..... maybe we will never know

    but if the tax services want to know the only thing they have to do is to organize enough processingpoxer and they will know it faster than if they need to investigate the transfer by traditional means (espectially if they need a convection)

    the anonimity of bitcoin is relative and it won't get much better if it wants to become accepted to the official instances of the US

  • track how China is eating all those precious bitcoins at an increasing rate

    the live tracker follows the biggest bitcoin exchanges and payment systems

    bitcoin is in China the only alternative currency next to the official strictly controlled one - untill they will stop it because it can become a bubble or become the financial support for the privatization of the economy or the housing or credit bubbles officials in China are trying so hard to maintain under control

    it is important to understand that there are only a limited amount of bitcoins (as is the case with precious metals and farmland - two other scare resources the chinese are buying worldwide) and the more are used, activated and traded the higher the price will be (it looks like a bubble, it sounds like a bublle so it can probably blow up like a bubble)

    this is also the main theoretical reason it can never become a real currency nor should it be considered as such

    at the other side one should take the hype with much sault because there aren't that many transactions (but with one bitcoin being already way above 500 Euro one should have much money to lose (or gamble) to buy bitcoins nowadays. It is not that you say, hey honey I've bought a new car with 100 bitcoins today and tomorrow you'll buy a house or so on. Not all transactions are 500 euro of course, they even can have the value of 1 euro going a for now never ending increasing number of points behind the zero.

    imagine what shortsellers could do with bitcoins ?

  • the Real Reasons why Bitcoins can't be an official international currency

    Everybody who has Bitcoins or invested in it or its future is hyping that now is the time for bitcoin because they say that after the hearings about bitcoins in the US senate it will only be months before it will be a real money accepted by the US

    do not forget that those hyping this - without any critical thinking (and most of the techies in the business and normal press just following the hype( just as before 2008 with the liberalisation of finance) - have REAL financial interest into hyping this. The course of the Bitcoin has exploded since the mass hypnotization has started and this means that they have become 'virtual' millionaires because they have bought bitcoins when nobody wanted them (at a dollar a piece). Some of them are already unloading (part) of their holding and cashing in (before the lemmings start looking for an exit and find all doors closed or non-existent. 

    take the following things into consideration

    * there is no currency in the world where the scarity of the availability depends on a mathematical formulae and not on a monetarian policy or political decisions. And Bitcoins will become far more scarce because it hasn't been invented to serve several billions of internetusers.

    * there is no currency in the world where the exchange rate of the money can not be adapted by the international financial institutions, the central banks or the political decisionmakers

    * it is totally against all the recent development that a currency would be totally anonymous and that there would be no taxes or other controls

    * there is no currency in the world that has so many inherent securityproblems in even its code, its infrastructure and the way it can be stolen from computers

    * there is no currency in the world where the traders or holders of the currency don't have to be controlled and have to abide by a whole set of rules and reglementations just to protect the consumers (us)

    * there is no currency in the world that is built upon an extreme libertarian (the most extreme liberal each for itself society) viewpoint of the economy and world

    * it is the virtual money by excellence used for online drugs, blackmarket, fraud and other illegal services

    * it is the biggest financial bubble that has to be controlled if we want to prevent real negative longterm effects on the real economy if it explodes (in China it is used to buy houses and factories bypassing governmental controls)

    but bitcoin shows something else that the official currencies will have to take into consideration

    there is need for an international accepted virtual currency for online transactions but that has to be linked to - for example - a basket of real currencies

    there is a real to lower the conversioncosts between currencies

    bitcoin will have to clean up its act in many different ways if it wants to become some kind of 'accepted' or 'tolerated' virtual money but if it wants to become the money of the internet it will have to change so dramatically that it will not be a bitcoin anymore (like the US Federal Bank says in its report, something better needs to be found)

    so, don't believe the hype (if there is hype, there is someone who has interest in the hype in the first place)