The crypto market crash of 2018 had brought a lot of troubles for the crypto world, and very difficult time, even for the best and strongest of projects. However, this was also a moment when stablecoins got their chance to shine. Due to the fact that they are pegged to other assets of value, such as fiat currencies, other cryptos, and alike — they were able to keep their prices stable and avoid volatility.
Among them, Tether (USDT) emerged as the most popular and largest of stablecoins. However, the coin also had a misfortune of getting involved in one controversy after another. As a result, many have started disregarding the coin, but even so, it still remains one of the largest cryptocurrencies, currently with $2.78 billion-large market cap.
However, the question of how many more scandals will USDT get involved with remains.
Tether scandals keep emerging
The first big issue with Tether came after it was noticed that it avoids audits which would confirm that all of its coins are backed by an appropriate amount of USD. Scandals continued throughout 2018, and even in 2019. One of the most recent ones came when the project updated its terms and conditions in March of this year. The problem was that it failed to make the changes known to the public.
If any traditional PLC did this, it would face massive consequences, including regulatory sanctions, as well as governmental, media, and even investor uproar. However, when it comes to Tether, the situation is more complex.
The new update claims that reserves which provide Tether coins with the value might include assets other than fiat currencies. Many have taken this as a discreet confirmation that Tether truly does not have enough funds to actually back its coins with $1 per coin.
Another, more recent event, got Tether involved in another controversy when one of the major exchanges — Bitfinex — used $850 million in USDT to cover its own losses. This was a major scandal due to the fact that the used coins were, supposedly, owned by investors, and not the exchange itself. What’s more, it appears that both, Tether and Bitfinex are operated by the same firm — iFinex Inc., which is registered with the British Virgin Islands.
This streak of scandals reflects badly not only on Tether but also on the entire crypto industry. What’s more, it puts the industry in jeopardy at the time when a stable project that would act as a true store of value is highly necessary. Meanwhile, Tether has still not provided a clear insight into its funds, not even to a reputable third party which would be able to confirm the state of things to investors.
Tether alternatives proving their worth
With Tether getting involved in one scandal after another, a number of other stablecoins emerged, trying to offer a more decent service. One example is TrueUSD, which also claims to be completely backed by USD. The difference between TUSD and USDT is that TrueUSD allowed insight into its accounts, thus confirming that it is telling the truth.
The company behind the audit, Cohen & Company Accounting Firm, confirmed that TrueUSD has an appropriate amount to cover its circulating supply. This is also not the only stablecoin that was able to confirm its value. diamDEXX, also known as DIAM, also offers stablecoins, although its tokens are backed by diamonds.
This is a popular project as diamonds have been acting as a store of value for a long time, and they represent a trusted asset that can protect and secure wealth. As mentioned, the company is also fully audited by IDEX, a trusted diamond exchange with a nearly two decades worth of reputable history. The company’s CEO, Jeremy Dahan, stated that seeing investors get disappointed in crypto is becoming a common occurrence.
He mentioned that Tether’s scandals caused investors to start speculating on its price when it should be a stable store of value. With a situation like that, Tether appears to be moving away from what it means to be a stablecoin.
While the stablecoins, in general, are a good thing for the crypto world — a trend which is likely to remain for as long as cryptos remain volatile — the same cannot be said about Tether. Stablecoins need to be transparent, even more so than regular cryptocurrencies. The absolute minimum requirement would be that they are audited by a trusted third party which would confirm that their value is real. Without that, they might as well be a scam.
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Disclaimer: This article should not be taken as, and is not intended to provide, investment advice. Global Coin Report and/or its affiliates, employees, writers, and subcontractors are cryptocurrency investors and from time to time may or may not have holdings in some of the coins or tokens they cover. Please conduct your own thorough research before investing in any cryptocurrency and read our full disclaimer.
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