Facebook to unveil new cryptocurrency

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(London) – Facebook is set to unveil a bid to bring cryptocurrency payments into the mainstream, reportedly with the endorsement of governments and financial giants.

The world´s biggest social network is expected to outline details of a virtual currency launching next year that it hopes will avoid the rollercoaster volatility of “blockchain” technologies such as bitcoin.

Facebook is setting up a consortium called “Libra” which, according to the Wall Street Journal, has been joined by more than a dozen companies including Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and Uber.

The companies along with venture capitalists and telecommunications firms will reportedly invest around $10 million each into the consortium.

Facebook has been trying to ward off hostile regulatory scrutiny after a series of privacy abuses and the spread of fake news.

The consortium will be managed externally and will seek to build trust among consumers by pegging the virtual coin to a basket of currencies including the dollar and euro, the Journal said.

Facebook has already sought blessings from the US Treasury and the Bank of England, the BBC reported last month.