After a Troubling Month, Tether (USDT) Sees its Market Cap Fall by $250 Million

Nuno Teodoro

Tether (USDT), has seen its market cap fall to $2.11 billion, as roughly $250 million USDT left circulation.

A consequence of recent events that saw the price of Tether decline, reaching a low of $0.8697, followed by an enormous spike in trading volume. Coinciding the fall of Tether’s value, the price of the three biggest cryptocurrencies by market value - bitcoin, ether, and XRP - rose by around 7%.

The circulating supply of the USDT token has been gradually decreasing over the past few days, with nearly 600 million fewer tokens circulating today than last week. The 250 million USDT tokens that recently exited circulation seem to indicate that investors are choosing alternative stable coins.

Alternative Stablecoins

The Gemini Dollar (GUSD) has been an alternative especially favored by investors, as the demand for the stablecoin created by the Winklevoss led to its price rising to $1.19 yesterday. Other stablecoins such as Paxos Standard (PAX) and Circle’s USDC have also made significant gains in terms of market cap and liquidity.

Uncertainty on part of the investors, rumours that Tether was going to be delisted from several exchanges, and Bitfinex suspending all fiat deposits were the likely catalysts that led to the plummeting of Tether’s market cap. Although the company behind the stablecoin, Tether Limited, claims to have enough reserves to match every USDT token, many in the crypto industry doubt the veracity of the audits made to the firm:

There is concern about Tether and whether it is truly backed by dollars and rumors about USDT (Tether) being delisted from various exchanges

Charles Hayter, CryptoCompare CEO

There are also recent reports claiming that Tether has found a new bank in the Caribbean, the Bahamas-based Deltec Bank, where allegedly it is holding the reserves at. It remains to be seen if Tether will be able to recover the thrust of investors and return its dollar pegged value. However, it is important to note that all of the major stable coins have broken their pegs, trading at values higher or lower than $1.

Hacked Exchange Cryptopia Enables Trading in 40 Different Currency Pairs

New Zealand-based digital asset exchange, Cryptopia has reportedly resumed trading on its exchange as it is now allowing 40 different trading pairs. This, after Cryptopia recently experienced from several different security breaches.

Support For Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dogecoin Pairs Added

Cryptopia’s management announced (via Twitter on March 18th) that it is planning to expand its list of coins which will again be supported on its trading platform. As noted on Cryptopia’s official support website, the exchange has enabled several different trading pairs (as of March 19th, 2019) with major cryptocurrencies. These include bitcoin (BTC), litecoin (LTC), and dogecoin (DOGE).

In response to Cryptopia’s announcement, Twitter user @dgb-chilling, a supporter of DigiByte (DGB), a cryptocurrency that uses five different mining algorithms, said that he had emailed the exchange’s support team to inform them regarding the coin’s latest update (version 6.17.2). He added that “an upgrade was recommended but not mandatory.”

Meanwhile, Chuck Norris (@CryptoTweet6) remarked: 

Now this is good news! Let’s hope the rest of the coins will be released for trading swiftly.

Other users also considered it “good news” that the compromised cryptoasset exchange was gradually resuming its operations. However, one social media user asked when Cryptopia would start enabling deposits while another inquired about why his ARK coins were still not recoverable from the trading platform. He claimed that he had deposited 1,000 ARK, currently valued at around $628, (a popular proof-of-stake based coin) on Cryptopia. The user also complained that his coins were missing “missing because [the exchange] did not update the ARK wallet."

Tens Of Millions Of Dollars Stolen In Hack

On February 27th, 2019, Cryptopia’s management announced that it was “assessing the impact incurred as a result of the hack” which led to the theft of tens of millions of dollars in cryptocurrency. Last month, Cryptopia’s support team had also estimated that the total loss incurred due to the security breaches was of around 10% of its total holdings (in the worst-case scenario).

Notably, the exchange’s official Twitter account had been silent for several weeks (since Feburary 14th). However, it released several announcements, starting in late February, in which it revealed that its staff members were working on securing each customer’s account individually. Cryptopia’s management also noted that it was taking the appropriate measures to ensure that its trading platform is secure when it is officially back online.