Tether, the controversial and leading stablecoin is now the fifth largest cryptocurrency in terms of the market cap according to data obtained from CoinMarketCap.
Stablecoins experience a year of growth
The cryptocurrency market has been in a bearish trend since the start of the year, with the prices of cryptocurrencies dropping by more than 70 percent since the all-time highs experienced last year and early this year.
It has been a good year for stablecoins nonetheless as more of them are developed and pumped into the market. The leading stablecoin Tether has been steadily rising since the start of the year and is now amongst the top five cryptocurrencies in terms of market cap. The total market cap of Tether currently stands at USD 1.8 billion and is close to Stellar’s XLM which has a market cap of USD 1.9 billion and occupies the fourth spot.
The recent hardfork of Bitcoin Cash has seen the cryptocurrency drop down the list. It was previously the fourth largest cryptocurrency but it has now dropped to the seventh with a market cap of just under USD 1.5 billion. With the rise of Tether, it has now overtaken popular coins like Bitcoin Cash, EOS, and Litecoin.
A controversial stablecoin
Despite its rise over the past few months, Tether remains the most controversial stablecoin. Tether was accused of printing more USDT tokens that weren’t actually backed by physical U.S dollars. A research paper was published by the University of Texas claims that the stablecoin was used to artificially inflate the price of Bitcoin anytime a sharp decline in price was experienced last year. They claimed that USDT was used in pushing the price of Bitcoin throughout last year.
The controversy led to the resignation of Phil Potter from the company, a move that signals that Bitfinex is looking to distance itself from Tether. The bear market has also affected stablecoins as Tether has lost roughly USD 700 million in assets. However, it has still outperformed some leading cryptocurrencies as it now stands fifth on the list of the largest cryptocurrencies by market cap.
Crypto market still down
The cryptocurrency market continues to suffer the bearish trend at this time of the year. The price of the leading cryptocurrency Bitcoin is now around the USD 3,300 region. Ripple which has overtaken Ethereum as the second largest cryptocurrency trades close to the USD 0.3 mark while Ethereum remains below the USD 100 mark.
The general market cap has also taken a beating and now hovers around the USD 100 billion mark. The expectations of most traders and market experts have failed to play out. There are expectations that the Bull Run will take place next year as institutional investors look set to come into the market.