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Circle FUD Fallout: Tether's USDT Surpasses USDC on Ethereum, Polygon

As Circle’s $USDC has lost ground, Tether-issued $USDT is now the dominant stablecoin on both Ethereum and Polygon.

Tether Gains Dominance on Ethereum, Polygon

Regulatory FUD from U.S. authorities has helped to catalyze a regime change in the world of cryptocurrency stablecoins, as $USDC has lost its dominant position to $USDT on both the Ethereum and Polygon blockchains.

The March 11 collapse of Silicon Valley Bank certainly shook crypto holders’ faith in the stability of $USDC (at least in the very short term), as it was disclosed that $USDC issuer Circle had more than $3 billion in reserves stored at the failed financial institution. $USDC suffered a major but brief de-peg, and it regained its $1 value a few days later, when Circle executives were able to reassure investors that the SVB collapse did not impact its ability to maintain the 1:1 backing for the stablecoin.

The apparent irony is that U.S. regulators’ statements and actions against stablecoins (notably $BUSD) have incentivized crypto holders to abandon stablecoins from U.S.-regulated issues (such as Paxos and Circle) in favor of issuers like Tether who are not subject to U.S. regulations.

$USDC’s market share on Ethereum is the blue line, $USDT is the green line and $BUSD is the yellow line. Source: DefiLlama

According to DefiLlama, $USDC lost its dominant position on Ethereum to $USDT on March 18, a week after the SVB debacle. $USDc had accounted for the plurality of stablecoins on Ethereum since the beginning of 2022. However, $USDT rose to the top spot as it benefitted from investors switching out of $USD and, since December 2022, $BUSD.

$USDC’s market share on Ethereum is the blue line, $USDT is the green line and $DAI is the red line. Source: DefiLlama

The narrative on Polygon is different but has the same result: $USDT has surpassed $USDC as the dominant stablecoin on the Ethereum sidechain.

The wrinkles in the story, however, are that $BUSD’s market share on Polygon was never significant; $USDC had always been the dominant stablecoin on Polygon; and $USDT’s ascent came at the expense of $USDC and $DAI.

Perhaps most importantly, $USDT surpassed $USDC on Polygon on March 2, according to DefiLlama, more than a week before SVB’s failure accelerated the abandonment of $USDC.

Overall, $USDT has strengthened its grip on the entire USD stablecoin marketplace, increasing its share of stablecoin holdings on all blockchains from less than 50% to nearly 60% since the beginning of the year.

The Tether-issued stablecoin accounts for almost all stablecoin holdings on Tron and is rapidly gaining even more ground on BNB Chain as $BUSD is being phased out.

One area where $USDC has maintained its edge over $USDT is on the fast-growing Arbitrum blockchain, where $USDC has 63% of the stablecoin market.

What is Ethereum:

Ethereum is an open-source, distributed computing platform based on blockchain technology that can execute smart contracts - that is, the terms written in the contract will be executed transparently, automatically when the previous conditions are satisfied, and no one can interfere. At the same time, Ethereum also allows developers to build decentralized applications (DApps) and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO).

Find more about Ethereum here:

Website | Twitter | Documentation | Whitepaper | Reddit | Discord | Youtube | GitHub | Ethereum Foundation Blog |

What is Polygon:

Polygon is a “sidechain” scaling solution that runs alongside the Ethereum blockchain — allowing for speedy transactions and low fees. MATIC is the network’s native cryptocurrency, which is used for fees, staking, and more. The effectiveness of Polygon as an alternative to Ethereum has seen existing projects such as Aave and Curve adopting its chain.

For more about Polygon:

Website | Twitter | GitHub | Reddit | YouTube

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