The Compatibility of Cryptocurrencies and Islamic Finance


In this article, I shall examine the compatibility of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies within the context of Islamic law. I shall begin by an introduction of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. I will then discuss the history of money in Islamic history, with an emphasis on the importance ethical financial dealings. I will then argue that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are highly compatible within Islamic finance, and in many cases, actually provide solutions to problems of government institution controlled currencies, arguing that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies better address several problems that early Islamic finance scholars were concerned with. Unlike traditional fiat, the supply of Bitcoin and many other digital currencies are fixed, thereby eliminating potential for gharar (deception), and also inflation. In addition, unlike fiat and precious metal coins, digital currencies cannot be altered, forged, or manipulated. Moreover, cryptocurrencies’ peer-to-peer transactions remove the need for any banking institution, thereby eliminating any risk with a third party controlling one’s money. I shall then conclude with a summary of the main points of the article, and examine future possibilities with regards to the role of digital and cryptocurrencies.


Bitcoin; Cryptocurrencies; Islam; Shariah; Islamic Finance; Islamic Banking

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Registrazione Tribunale di Torino n.: 29
data registrazione: 21.10.2014
ISSN 2421-2172
Direttore responsabile: Paolo Biancone

Università degli Studi di Torino


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