July 2, 2016
International payments are not optimized for micro transactions. A foreign withdrawal from an ATM may be charged up to 5%. Wire transfers from banks deduct an arbitrary fee sometimes both from the sender and the receiver. Banks are often not upfront about the currency exchange rates and swallow money in between a transaction without giving any indication to the customer.
When we deal with international payments, there are a lot of moving parts. SWIFT/IBAN wire transfers are not always direct, i.e., from the sender to the receiver, and there may be quite a few intermediary banks involved before the funds reach their destination. There is no way to tell what banks take what amount from the wire. For large payments, these costs may not be too significant but if you are looking to transfer say less than EUR 1000, internationally, then small cuts matter.
Single currency across all the banks seems like an attractive solution. With a digital currency like bitc ...