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German Central Bank Offers First Tentative Blockchain Trading Feedback

The German central bank has released the results from its initial blockchain test, as it continues to explore new possibilities through the blockchain.

The Deutsche Bundesbank announced the start of the trial back in November, in partnership with German exchange Deutsche Borse. The trial was designed to examine the feasibility of a blockchain-based system for securities trading, which some analysts have suggested could be the future for exchanges and central banks worldwide.

The test was described as a “conceptual study” by the central bank when details were first announced. But following the first successful stages of the trial, a spokesperson for the Bundesbank said, they are almost in a position to confirm that the system works.

Carl-Ludwig Thiele, an executive board member at the Bundesbank, described the results of their initial trials at a G20 conference on financial technology.

While he acknowledged promising early signs, there was a suggestion that the trial may have further to go before the system can be ready for a wider rollout.

“Our conceptual study shows that blockchain technology can be adapted to meet the current needs and requirements of the financial system. The prototype works. Having said that, its further development for mass use is still presenting many challenges.

“With this as our starting point, we aim to develop a technically more sophisticated prototype, capable of providing information on technical performance and thus allowing comparison with our present settlement infrastructure.”

The event was also attended by other central bank leaders, including Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, and Bundesbank president Jens Weidmann.

Others in the industry are sure to be keeping a close eye on the German trial, which could pave the way for a significant overhaul of transactional processing and recording in the near future.

Analysts have suggested both the instantaneous nature of the blockchain, and its ability to securely track and record transactional information, could lead to significant efficiency gains in banking and finance, not to mention a host of other industries.

As the technology continues to develop, some commentators are suggesting 2017 could be the year that the blockchain bursts into mainstream applications and industries.

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