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Nouriel Roubini Says Facebook’s GlobalCoin Has ‘Nothing to Do With Crypto’

Daniel Palmer
House Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Waters asked Facebook to halt development of its Libra crypto until hearings can be held.

Noted economist and cryptocurrency skeptic Nouriel Roubini has said Facebook’s soon-to-be unveiled cryptocurrency, reportedly called GlobalCoin, is not really crypto.

In a conversation with CoinDesk, Roubini – also nicknamed “Dr. Doom” for his prediction of the financial crash in 2007 and 2008 – said:

“It has nothing to do with blockchain. Fully private, controlled, centralized, verified and authorized by a small number of permissioned nodes. So what is crypto or blockchain about it? None.”

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Indeed, according to recent reports, the social media giant has signed up more than a dozen backers for its GlobalCoin cryptocurrency, a stablecoin apparently to be backed by a basket of fiat currencies. Each of the new backers – which reportedly include Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and Uber – will invest roughly $10 million in the project as part of a governing consortium for the cryptocurrency.

While he acknowledged that specifics of the project are not yet known (but are expected to be revealed in a white paper Tuesday), Roubini suggested that it is unlikely that GlobalCoin would use common blockchain technologies such as proof-of-work or proof-of-stake. “Why would they?” he said.

And while many in the crypto community have also criticized those calling Facebook’s token a cryptocurrency, the economist denied that he shared any common ground with the “crypto faithful.”

He told CoinDesk that he has gone on record as saying that “enterprise DLT [distributed ledger technology] is blockchain in name only … so some crypto faithful may agree on that.”

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Roubini concluded by saying:

“But in my opinion, public decentralized trustless blockchain is a pipe dream … so we disagree on 99% of [the] substance.”

Click here to see our comprehensive guide to Facebook’s GlobalCoin.

Nouriel Roubini image via Shutterstock

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