New Debit Cards Offer Options but Come with Compromises

Euro Pacific Bank’s gold debit card has been available since late last year and now BitInstant has a Bitcoin backed debit card in the works.

While these are wonderful new innovations that no doubt will help alternative currency users, the current options come with catches as they are compromises between the old fiat system and their more innovative alternatives.

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Fed side stepping transaction and ownership issues by conducting its own gold audit?

As reported recently in several major newspapers and on Zero Hedge, the NY Fed is undergoing an audit of the gold stored in the vault of its Wall Street office. Reportedly about 23% of the world’s official gold reserves, including gold owned by foreign countries and the IMF, are stored in the central bank’s vault. One could assume from the Fed’s timing that this might be an effort to put to rest ‘conspiracy theories’ about the Fed’s missing gold. Although those concerned about the Fed’s ‘transactions’ in gold, see this as the Fed’s attempt to quiet concerns while avoiding the real issue.

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Rumour has it the CFTC may drop its silver market investigation

The Financial Times has just released an article claiming that several people familiar with the CFTC’ silver investigation are saying that the regulator has not found enough evidence to pursue a legal case and will soon drop the investigation.

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A House Subcommittee holds an interesting hearing, including some testimony you can’t miss

I once again subjected myself to a House Subcommittee hearing; this time I was pleasantly surprized.

Yesterday the House Subcommittee on Financial Services, held a hearing titled “Sound Money: Parallel Currencies and the Roadmap to Monetary Freedom”.  There were an excellent group of witnesses, some intelligent questions from the committee members and testimony from Mr Rob Grey of The American Open Currency Standard that you don’t want to miss.

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Bits and Pieces 1stAug

Bitcoin is now on Brazilian regulators radar. Recently the Comissão de Valores Mobiliários, the Brazilian version of the US’s the Securities and Exchange Commission, ordered a Brazilian man to suspend the operations of his investment fund. Leandro César, an IT Consultant from Belo Horizonte, had setup a small (~US$4,500) investment fund denominated entirely in bitcoin.  http://www.bitcoinmoney.com/post/28048708075/brazil-bitcoin-securities

Ron Paul’s Audit the Fed bill passes the house http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-07-25/fed-audit-bill-opposed-by-bernanke-approved-by-u-s-house.html

Bitcoin continues its international expansion. In May, Bitcoin caught on in China with a 700% volume increase and BitInstant customers in the US, Russia and Brazil were given 700,000 more locations to purchase bitcoins. Now Bitcoin Nordic, a new Denmark based exchange, is looking to expand into the North Africa and the Middle East market by accepting CashU, a popular payment option in the region. http://bitcoinmagazine.net/bitcoin-nordic-brings-bitcoins-to-middle-east-and-north-africa/