The ECB and € E-Banknotes

125 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2020 Last revised: 27 Aug 2020

See all articles by Corinne Zellweger-Gutknecht

Corinne Zellweger-Gutknecht

University of Zurich; University of Basel

Benjamin Geva

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School

Seraina N. Grunewald

University of St. Gallen (HSG); Radboud University Nijmegen; EUSFIL Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence

Date Written: August 1, 2020


The modern monetary system is controlled by the state and yet linked to private deposit banking. Monetary value held in deposits with commercial banks is known as ‘commercial bank money’ (CoBM). Monetary value held in deposits with the central bank – as well as banknotes issued by the central bank – is called ‘central bank money’ (CeBM). Under this scheme, central banks thus issue two forms of central bank money: cash for the retail sector and balances in traditional reserve accounts for wholesale purposes (reserves). However, for several years now, and most recently in particular against the background of private actors commencing to issue private digital currencies, a growing number of central banks have also been investigating the possibility and implications of issuing a digital form CeBM for the general public: central bank digital currency (CBDC), also known as retail CBDC (rCBDC).

Suggested Citation

Zellweger-Gutknecht, Corinne and Geva, Benjamin and Grunewald, Seraina, The ECB and € E-Banknotes (August 1, 2020). Osgoode Legal Studies Research Paper , Available at SSRN: or

Corinne Zellweger-Gutknecht

University of Zurich

Rämistrasse 71
Zürich, CH-8006

University of Basel ( email )

Peter-Merian-Weg 8
Basel, CH-4003

Benjamin Geva (Contact Author)

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
416 736 5045 (Phone)
416 736 5736 (Fax)


Seraina Grunewald

University of St. Gallen (HSG) ( email )

St.Gallen, 9000

Radboud University Nijmegen ( email )

Postbus 9108
Nijmegen, 6500 HK

HOME PAGE: http://

EUSFIL Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence ( email )


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