In Push for Financial Innovation, U.K. to Examine Perils and Promise of Virtual Currency

By Irene Madongo

British officials will soon review the promises and risks of alternative payment systems, including virtual currencies, as part of a broad initiative to promote advances in financial technology. "These alternative payment systems are popular because they are quick, cheap and convenient, and I want to see whether we make more use of them for the benefit of the U.K. economy and British consumers," Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said in a speech. The government will also investigate the potential risks the technology poses, he said. As part of the broader initiative disclosed Wednesday, HM Treasury will ask lawmakers to...