Bitcoin’s 2021 Bull Run: What has Changed since 2017?

In February 2021, the price of Bitcoin skyrocketed to over US$58,000 after Elon Musk’s Tesla said it had bought up US$1.5 billion of the cryptocurrency. One major Bitcoin investor said he saw the price rising to US$100,000 by the end of the year. The meteoric rise in the price of Bitcoin is more than 1,000 […]

Four Praises and a Funeral: In Defence of Short Selling

Everyone loves a good underdog story in which an unlikely hero takes on a mighty foe in the face of overwhelming odds. The recent US stock market uprising involving the mobilisation of retail investors to collectively drive up the share price of GameStop, a video-game retailer best known for its bricks and mortar stores, can […]

Wall Street Bets Vs. The Street

The big story at the moment is how a community on the Reddit subgroup WallStreetBets has managed to bring to heel multi-billion dollar hedge funds who had been shorting GameStop shares. The shares are up a staggering 1,800 per cent in 2021, getting as high as US$480 at one point and now down to US$194 […]

Programmable Money and CBDC

In 2020, one of the interesting topics being discussed in parallel to central bank digital currency (CBDC) is programmable money (PM). Like CBDC, programmable money does not appear to have a clear definition. In this post we will discuss our understanding of programmable money, its potential usefulness and possible obstacles to future use. What is […]

The Rise in Interest in CBDC

The following is the first in a series of blog posts on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). The purpose of this post is a discussion of the sudden surge of interest in CBDCs. Motivations for CBDCs With the evolution of technology, digital payments have been on the rise. As technology has increasingly been leveraged to […]

COVID-19 and the Lessons for Widening Sustainable Finance

We are in the midst of an unprecedented pandemic. Apart from the tragic loss of life, the economic implications will be felt for years. This will not only be in terms of the businesses that have been closed down, many of which will never re-open, but also through effects on employment and career development, and […]

Dynamics of Output Growth During Pandemics: Evidence from Two Centuries of Data

In this Suara SEACEN article, we show that global output growth slows down during pandemics, and global growth in the post-pandemic period is slightly lower than the pre-pandemic period. This article argues that public health must remain the top priority; and fiscal stimulus that will cushion the severe impacts of the pandemic must play dominant […]

Crisis Preparedness in the Age of COVID-19: a Primer

Maintaining confidence and the smooth functioning of financial markets[i] Since the initial publication of this blog post, this article has been further developed into a full fledged SEACEN Policy Analysis Paper, which has been published on the SEACEN Centre Website on 15 May 2020. The paper can be accessed here. As the world shelters from […]

FDI and Capital Flows: New Perspectives from New Data

Capital flows and their volatility present challenges for economic policy makers.  They can exacerbate economic cycles.  Their outflows can lead to costly “sudden stops”.  One particular form of capital flows, namely foreign direct investment (FDI) has been regarded differently compared to other forms of capital flows like debt and portfolio flows.  First, unlike foreign portfolio […]

COVID-19: Financial Stability and Business Continuity Management – Part B

This is the second of a two-part series of our discussion on COVID-19, financial stability and business continuity management (BCM). In Part A we discussed the steps regulatory authorities can take to implement their own BCM programs, and expect from their regulated FIs, during the current pandemic. This blog post is Part B, and is […]