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This is Business Live from BBC News
with Ben Thompson and David Eades.
Is Bitcoin about to
get a clearer future?
Traders can now bet on the price
of the crypto currency rising
So could banks be holding Bitcoin
alongside their gold
and dollar reserves?
Live from London, that's
our top story on Monday
the 11th of December.
The price of Bitcoin has surged
as the crypto currency goes
mainstream and begins
trading on a major exchange
for the first time.
We'll be explaining
what it all means.
Also in the programme:
talking tough on trade -
the WTO rejects President Trump's
protectionist rhetoric and calls for
a more free-flowing relationship.
And markets across Europe are
looking like this: It is a big week
for Central bank action. We will
have all the details.
And we'll be getting
the Inside Track on the man bringing
the family name back
to the chocolate business.
James Cadbury will be
here to talk about his ethical
And new research suggests the price
of Christmas is rising
significantly. Today we want to know
if you will be celebrating this
year, do you have any clever tricks
to bring the price down? Let us
know. Just use the hashtag
Hello and welcome to Business Live.
Welcome to the programme.
We start with a major step
for the digital currency Bitcoin.
It's begun trading on a major
exchange for the first time.
The CBOE Futures Exchange
in Chicago opened trading
in Bitcoin futures on Sunday,
and the cryptocurrency
rose above $18,000.
Bitcoin started the year at around
$1,000, but the crypto-currency has
surged in value recently and last
week hit $17,000 for the first time.
Last Friday, it fell
by 14% in a single day,
but supporters say this weekend's
introduction of futures trading
will make it more mainstream.
That allows investors to lock
in a price at which they can buy
or sell something in the future.
This allows them to profit
from price increases
or limit their losses
if prices fall.
Thank you very much, Ben.
Simon Taylor, Co-Founder
and Blockchain Practice Lead
at 11:FS, a consultancy
which advises banks
and governments on the future
of money, he joins me
It is one-way traffic, which begs
the question, who is losing? This is
an asset which is limited in supply,
there are only 21 million bitcoin,
So will it continue on
this extraordinary journey upwards?
Who knows? It has the capacity to
surprise, it went from less than
$100 to nearly $1000 before, and
then fell off a cliff, and this may
happen again just as much as it
continues to grow.
It is now trading
in Chicago, it has gone a certain
level of respectability? That is the
first step, isn't it?
certainly a mainstream moment, but
it is interesting that the volumes
are very low. That could be just
because it is early and it may
continue. It is also interesting
that, the mainstream media is paying
attention, we are talking about it
on the BBC, instants. I have had 37
people get in touch at the last week
asking how to buy it, which says a
We were reflecting on Christine
Lagarde from the IMF saying, it is
not the time for bitcoin, far too
early, and looking at the dark side
of the criminal underworld that uses
it as well, and yet as we sit here,
that has been relegated to the last
question I am going to ask you
rather than the first.
I think that
is important, because that used to
be the perception, whereas when you
look at the data, that is a very
small useful bitcoin. Because it was
assumed to behave like cash, people
treated it like that, and
unfortunately cash is used for
illicit goods quite often, but what
they don't look at is, why would I
spend bitcoin when it is going up in
value so much? It is a very bad form
of cash right now because it is
gaining value so quickly.
wouldn't do it for that reason. You
took out bitcoin a long while ago,
is so you have seen the one-way
traffic, hence you have 38 very good
friends you forgot you had.
is something where it was just this
strange story after the side, and
now everybody is paying attention
just because the price has moved.
But let's not lose sight of the fact
that this currency was invented by
people on the Internet that was
anonymous that is getting a
mainstream attention from central
banks, so the really interesting
question is, is losing? I really
don't know. When the price of gold
goes up, jewellery makers lose,
technology makers lose. Who loses
when the price of bitcoin goes up?
That is a very good question. Thank
you very much indeed.
Let's take a look at some of
the other stories making the news.
The French baby milk formula maker
Lactalis has ordered a global
product recall over fears
of salmonella contamination.
It covers hundreds of baby milk
powder products marketed
globally under the Milumel,
Picot and Celi brands.
Health authorities in France says 26
infants in the country have become
sick since early December.
The Gulf State of Qatar has signed
another major deal to buy
hi-tech defence equipment.
It will spend $8 billion on 24
Typhoon fighter jets,
which will be built in the UK.
It follows a deal struck last week
with a French supplier for nearly
500 armoured vehicles.
And Germany's intelligence agency
claims that China has been
using fake LinkedIn profiles
to gather information on German
officials and politicians.
The agency alleges that Chinese
intelligence used the networking
site to target at least 10,000
Germans, possibly to recruit
them as informants.
Now, a meeting of the World Trade
Organisation has opened
in Buenos Aires with a call
for the 164 member international
trade body to be strengthened.
Mariko Oi is in Singapore.
Is this basically a message for
Donald Trump that we don't like so
much protectionism talk?
You can definitely say that, as you
mentioned the World Trade
Organisation has been criticised a
lot lately, especially from
President Donald Trump. This is the
first meeting since he took office,
he has called the global trade body
a disaster, as he pushes his America
first policy. He has for example
threatened to pull the US out of the
trade organisation, and not only
that, the WTO is racked by
disagreements over China, Beijing
wants to be recognised as a market
economy as opposed to the current
status of a nonmarket economy, while
some of its members accused China of
selling its products cheaper than
the market rate, everything from
steel to alimony, and the WTO has
been unable to solve these problems
and kick-start a stalled trade
talks, not just the transpacific
partnership. So the trade
organisation is facing quite a lot
of challenges as it continues its
meeting until Wednesday.
good to see you, thank you very much
explaining all of that. A quick look
at the numbers for you. This is what
the picture looked like across Asia
overnight. Some optimism over what
is going to be a big week for the
Central banks, notably the Fed and
whether we will get a rate rise on
Wednesday. This gives us an
indication of quite how monetary
policy is changing, and the very
different response that we are
seeing in places like the United
States versus what for example we
are seeing here in the UK. Let me
just show you what Europe is doing
at this point in the day as well,
and yes, little bit of optimism
ahead of what is going to be
starting to wind down before the
Christmas holiday, of course, and we
will discuss these numbers in just a
moment, Jane Foley is standing by to
do that. But first we will head to
the US, because Samir has the
details of the day ahead on Wall
The focus this week will be
on the US Federal reserve is two-day
meeting in Washington,
which begins on Tuesday.
Now, the Fed will announce
its decision on interest
rates the next day.
The Fed kept interest rates
unchanged at the previous meeting
while pointing to a solid US
economic growth and
strengthening labour market.
Now, investors will focus
on the quarterly results of some
major companies on Thursday.
Oracle, Adobe Systems
and Costco wholesale
will be reporting earnings.
But on Monday, the focus will be
on Bitcoin, the crypto currency that
has been skyrocketing in value
in the last few weeks.
Now, the first Bitcoin
futures will be traded
on the CBOE's Futures Exchanges.
This could be a gateway into giving
the crypto currency some legitimacy,
but others worry that the volatility
of Bitcoin may make these kinds
of futures somewhat unreliable.
Joining us is Jane Foley, Senior
Currency Strategist at Rabobank.
Thank you for joining us. We are all
sort of looking forward to
Christmas, but this is a busy week
for the central bank.
It is. You
have the Federal reserve
announcement on Wednesday, and the
market is fully priced for another
The Fed tipped to hike interest
rates by 0.25% to 1.5% on Wednesday.
But perhaps that would be the
interesting thing about this
meeting, because we really want to
know the message. We are seeing tax
reform going through the process,
and that could have an impact on
growth, and of course that could
have an impact then potentially an
inflation, so is the Fed is going to
hike more or less than we think?
That is the message that we want to
hear on Wednesday.
And that message
could give us an indication about
whether there will be further rate
rises in 2018. We were still talking
about potentially four rate rises
next year, and I touched on it
there, it is so different to what
we're seeing in the UK, where we
have had one rate rise, and that is
it fair now, we don't do anything
That might be the case,
but certainly we still draw,
features, and one of these is
despite the fact and we have very
low unemployment levels. We are not
seeing the wage rises come through,
and without wage rises, you don't
get the demand for your deflation,
and the federal government said it
was a mystery that we are not seeing
more inflation in the US despite the
low unemployment rate, and I think
that is one of the reasons why,
we're not seeing wage inflation.
Yes, growth is relatively poor here
than perhaps we are seeing across
the pond, and you expect another
rate rise ASAP?
That is different,
what the by giving them are saying
here is that we're not getting the
investment that we otherwise would
because of the political
uncertainty, and without investment,
you don't get the extra capacity and
therefore you hit inflationary
constraints. But there are
similarities with the labour market,
Jane, thank you very
much, and Jane will return to talk
as though some of the papers later.
Still to come.
We are going to get the Inside Track
of the man putting ethics back in
the chocolate business. James
Cadbury will be here to talk to us
about it, and most importantly, he
has got samples, we are told!
You're with Business
Live from BBC News.
He has just given me the thumbs up!
Boxes of chocolate! He hasn't got
mince pies or Brussels sprouts.
Christmas wouldn't be
Christmas without a table
piled high with food.
But the price of the festive grocery
shop has spiralled this year,
thanks to growing food inflation.
Joining us now is Yael Selfin,
Chief UK Economist at KPMG.
Good morning. Explain this for us.
It is no surprise that prices are
going up, but we are so used to food
prices coming down as a result of
price wars between the big
Indeed, we have had
that for quite some time, but now
with the fall of the pound, what we
have seen is the cost of imports
rising, and that causes inflation
overall, and food prices as well, to
It is a seasonal issue, too,
for some things as well. Brussels
sprouts up 8.5%. Is that down to the
strength of the pound or the
weakness of the season?
be different factors each food
category if you like. For example we
have seen fish going up quite
significantly, we above what we have
seen on the rise for meat, for
example, over the year to October.
But overall, I would say the pound
made a big impact given that we
import a lot of our food, but there
will be other seasonal effect as
well as weather and labour related
And how much will people
stop paying Christmas to? Not very
Thank you very much. Smoked
salmon up 22%, would you believe.
There is much more on the Business
Live page, if I can show you some of
the numbers. It includes food, but
also things like laptops, up by 14%,
premium smartphones up nearly 7%,
and as David touched on there, the
pound falling by as much as 20%
relative to other currencies, it
makes clear there, so that means the
stuff that is being imported by
retailers is much more expensive.
Much more on the Business Live page
if you want to take a look,
including the latest market news for
you this morning, and snow related
of course, you know a lot of
disruption yesterday, we have just
heard from Eurotunnel, they are
telling us, if we can get the
pictures to load, services back to
normal after a difficult day for
You're watching Business Live.
Our top story:
Bitcoin has begun
trading on a major exchange
for the first time.
It launched on the CBOE futures
exchange in Chicago late on Sunday,
allowing investors to bet
on whether Bitcoin prices
will rise or fall.
A quick look at how
markets are faring.
Markets are looking like this across
Europe in the first 45 minutes and
we are going to keep a close eye on
those, because as we discussed with
Jane earlier, the Fed is expected to
raise rates on Wednesday so they
will be keeping a close eye on what
the minutes tell us about potential
rate rises for next year.
The name Cadbury is synonymous
with chocolate here in the UK,
but it's now owned by Kraft
after a takeover in 2010.
And that's prompted one
descendant of founder
John Cadbury to re-enter
the chocolate business.
Sir James Cadbury founded
Love Cocoa last year,
inspired by his great-great-great
and philanthropic business ideals.
Well, Love Cocoa aims
to use ingredients from
independent British suppliers
where possible and his start-up
donates 10% of all
profits to charity.
We are going to join James now.
Thank you for coming into the
studio. We are bound to say, with a
name like Cadbury how can you fail,
but it is not on the box, you're
Love Cocoa. Why didn't you pick up
the Cadbury mantle?
I wanted it to
be my own brand. There is a big
player doing that sort of thing so I
wanted it to be me own brand. So I
thought Love Cocoa.
So you couldn't
have used your own name even if you
No, I looked into a lot,
but it was going to create too much
issues. I didn't think it was worth
it. I wanted to create something
which I was really proud about and I
didn't want to rely on the Cadbury
How frustrating is it not
being able to use the Cadbury name?
Is it frustrating?
It was a bit
frustrating at the start especially
when everybody said why are you not
calling it James Cadbury? Yeah, it
is frustrating, but at the same time
I didn't want to just rely on that,
it is nice to have some independent
and also we are aiming at a
different customer. We are using the
principles when Cadbury first
started, it was about being the
purest and the best and they had a
really amazing packaging which was
hand drawn. We use the principles
with Love Cocoa. So we wanted to
create something different.
If you look inside, when we started
the business, it was all about
providing better box to consumers.
So we saw stuff going to consumers
and we wanted wanted to get feedback
and we have got into Harvey Nichols.
This is hand-made chocolate rather
than from a factory. I can see the
high end appeal. What difference
does it make in terms of the
What difference does
it make if it's hand-made?
of being hand-made you're
guaranteeing the quality will be
there. We are employing people in
the UK so rather than it being made
in a huge factory in other parts of
the world, we are making it in the
UK. And there is a lot of detail and
attention going into that.
grown-up packaging. You talk about
the traditional element, don't you?
This is grown-up packaging. I'm
going to share some!
I note your name is on it?
got it on there. By James Cadbury.
That was allowed, but I wasn't
allowed to call it James Cadbury
This is organic. This is
a more sophisticated view when you
might have your chocolate with a
glass of wine or with coffee?
wanted to do something for adults
and we are going with lots of
different flavours. We have got
avocado and a gym bar. We wanted to
stand out. We do try and do things
differently. I was listening about
how Bitcoin is rising. We take
Bitcoin which is something to stand
out from the market. So all these
little things to stand out is where
you need to be because that's what
Cadbury did when they started. They
were a challenger brand and they
came from being challenger to being
the biggest in the UK and we want to
do something similar, but retain the
James, thank you very much
indeed. Good luck with it.
Later this week the EU Summit will
take place in Brussels.
Businesses across Europe, of course,
are following the talks closely.
That includes the airline industry
and the BBC's correspondent spoke to
the account and CEO of the Dutch
airline, KLM and asked him how
crucial a Brexit deal was for
For KLM, the UK is an extremely
important market. Swerve out of
Amsterdam 16 destinations in the UK
and swerve more cities in the UK if
Amsterdam by KLM than BA does out of
London Heathrow. It underlines the
relevance of the UK market for us.
If we look to the Brexit, obviously,
it will create a complicated picture
even more complicated picture for
the UK carriers as compared to the
European carriers. So, we need to
see what the exact structure is
going to be. And there is a lot of
unclarity. There is unclarity with
the various parties and stakeholders
as to how it will look like and
clearly for us, as a business,
clarity is an extremely important
thing to get going forward.
would be the ideal scenario from a
KLM point of view?
There should not
be an EU a la carte, you can pick
and choose what you want. It's very
important from an EU prospective
that there is pros and cons and
there is things you like and things
you like less. It is very relevant
even if we look to the aviation
sector we are part of a global trade
system between the EU and the UK. So
I think it's very important that
even a aviation should be considered
which is found in other industries
Jane Foley has joined up again.
There is a lot of change in Saudi
Arabia in terms of the crowned
prince wanting to open up the
kingdom, from early 2018, they will
allow cinemas in the country. Up
until now, there has been no cinemas
there. So, a new industry opening up
in Saudi Arabia. Opening up to
foreign films that we would also
expect, but they say the first
cinemas could open from March 2018.
That's a significant change, isn't
It is the latest story of
change. We heard that they are going
allow women to drive. They want
tourism and perhaps these two
reforms are tied in with that. They
want tour ym. They have a lot of
pressure on their budget and this is
because, of course, the price of oil
in recent years has fallen
dramatically, from an economic point
of view, there is a need for Saudi
to move into different areas, hence
the tourism, but it is about a clamp
down on corruption and reform. Huge
changes really in Saudi over the
last couple of months.
There must be
so many businesses, cinema
operators, now waiting on the
sidelines trying to find out what
the change is and waiting to go in.
So be the tourism companies and be
the cinema operators and the
popcorn, all those wanting to move
into Saudi Arabia?
One of the
interesting things about the
stories, we haven't seen much push
back from the Conservatives because
a lot of people said well, surely
the Conservatives are going to push
back on this, saying this is too
far, too fast in terms of opening up
this economy. If there is a push
back, it will have a business
implication for those companies who
want to move into Saudi from a
This is in the
FT on New Zealand looking to ban
foreigners from buying houses. This
is a country which had an open door
policy until recently about trying
to bring more people in, but now
such is the shortage of stock, it's
putting up the shutters.
amazing, we have seen strong house
price gains in a number of countries
in recent years and of course, I
would say that this is one of the
main features that buyers, the
recent election in New Zealand.
Auckland house prices have gone up
90% in a decade and that's squeezing
people out. Now, we had the election
recently. We had the Labour Party
coalition come in, and that was,
what we saw is a king maker was the
New Zealand first. A real
nationalist party who wanted to ban
foreigners from buying houses so
that domestics can buy, but to stop
foreigners from investing in the
country. This is real nationalistic
policies that we're seeing in New
Zealand which I think is really
quite dramatic given that it's a G
Jane, do you think you
will spend more this Christmas than
you have in previous years?
It is always the way. We
have been asking you for your
comments this morning about how you
might save a few quid. William says,
"Don't buy stuff you don't need. It
will cost money and cost the
environment." I like this from
Citizen "Get yourself invited to
someone else's Christmas party. It
will save you money." Buy in the
sales, you can't really do it, you
would save 50%, but lose credibility
at home. Food price inflation means
that things are getting more
expensive, but somehow we always
spend more. It is an easy hit for
the sellers, isn't it, retailers,
you have got to buy?
is so big this time of year as well.
Jane, lovely to see you, thank you
very much indeed.
Thank you for your company, we will
be back at the same time, same place