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What are stablecoins?
Stablecoins are a type of cryptocurrency that is tied to the value of traditional valuable assets. It can be fiat money, precious metals, or even energy. The basis for stablecoins is the blockchain, on the basis of which the coins operate.
The main task of stablecoin developers is to create a cryptocurrency that is immune to volatility and inflation, convenient for exchange for other assets, for buying goods, investing or storing capital. Stablecoins are pegged to an asset 1:1. Deviations are possible up or down, but they are insignificant.
Who needs stablecoins and why?
The relatively stable exchange rate of the US dollar against the currencies of other countries is already taken for granted. Inflation undoubtedly affects the dollar as well, but not significantly, given that there are countries whose currencies can lose their value by 15% or more per year.
Stablecoins can be a great alternative for people living in countries with unstable national currencies and government capital controls.
Also, stablecoins can reduce the number of intermediaries in the financial system, which will accordingly reduce the cost of paying commissions.
A stable rate opens up many possibilities for users. People may not waste time and resources trying to preserve their savings. Stablecoins have a chance in the future to become the basis for the international market for lending and financial derivatives.
Features of stablecoins
- The main advantage of stablecoins is stability. The price of a stablecoin directly depends on the real asset. There are fluctuations in the rate, but insignificant.
- Stablecoins are backed by real assets. This allows you to use them as an investment without fear that the currency may lose its value at any time.
- Popularization of cryptocurrency. Virtual currencies, backed by traditional money, inspire more confidence in investors.
Disadvantages of stablecoins
- Stablecoin exchanges verify their clients. Part of the crypto community believes that one of their main principles suffers from this — anonymity.
- The first stablecoin, Tether, was created in 2015. Subsequent stablecoins have no original idea.
- Centralization — all support is with the project owner. Therefore, it is recommended to study the history of the company and its owner well before purchasing a stablecoin.
Implementation of stablecoins in blockchains
USDT was originally launched on the Bitcoin blockchain using the Omni Layer protocol. Today USDT is available on other blockchains including Ethereum, Tron, Binance Coin and EOSIO.
Paxos is available on the Ethereum blockchain.
USD Coin was originally available on the Ethereum blockchain. Recently blockchains Algorand, Solana and Stellar joined USDC support.
TrueUSD is available on the Ethereum blockchain. Integration of TrueUSD with the Avalanche blockchain is planned for the first quarter of 2021.
FixedFloat currently supports USDT on the Ethereum and Tron blockchains. Paxos, USD Coin and TrueUSD are available on the Ethereum blockchain.
Comparative table of stablecoins relevant for March 2021
|Stablecoin||Year of appearance||Backed by USD||Blocking addresses||Audit||Market capitalization|
|2015||not known for certain||Yes1||absent||$38 118 336 807|
|2018||on 100%||-||monthly from Withum||$751 014 146|
|2018||on 100%||Yes2||regular from Gant Thornton LLP||$9 122 026 242|
|2018||on 100%||-||monthly from Cohen & Co||$286 644 970|