The Federal Reserve on Thursday released a highly anticipated report on central bank digital currencies that suggested it is leaning toward having banks and other financial firms, rather than the Fed itself, manage digital accounts for customers.

A central bank digital currency would differ in some key ways from the online and digital payments that millions of Americans already conduct. Those transactions are funneled through banks, which wouldn’t be necessary with a digital dollar.

The Fed’s paper, while stressing that no final decisions about a digital currency have been reached, said it would likely follow an “intermediated model” under which banks or payment firms would create accounts or digital wallets. An alternative system would be for the Fed to issue digital dollars directly to consumers. But as the paper notes, the Fed isn’t authorized under law to create individual accounts.

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