The market capitalization of Tether (USDT), the world’s largest stable coin, zipped past $50 billion on Monday, in a sign that the cryptocurrency bull market was still heating up.
Tether Operations Limited confirmed the milestone on Friday, with roughly 50 billion USDT now reported to be in circulation. Tether’s supply, and hence its market cap, has grown by more than a factor of 10 over the last 12 months. That includes 25% growth in the span of a month.
As a dollar-backed stablecoin, one USDT is equivalent to $1 in assets held by Tether.
“Crossing a market cap of US$50 billion represents an incredibly important milestone for Tether,” said Paolo Ardoino, CTO at Tether. He continued:
“Tether’s success is a blueprint for a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) and a banking system of the future. We are truly humbled by the pivotal role that Tether now plays in the digital token ecosystem across myriad protocols and applications.”
USDT enjoys a unique position in the cryptocurrency community. As the first stablecoin to be issued, USDT is now the most liquid and widely used dollar peg on the market. On several exchanges, USDT remains one of the top quote currencies for Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethere (ETH) trading pairs.
At the time of writing, USDT accounted for roughly 66.1% of the overall stablecoin market. USD Coin, the next largest stablecoin, is worth less than $11 billion.
The stablecoin issuer has been the center of speculation about its reserves, with some crypto observers commenting that Tether disinformation has been a major source of fear, uncertainty and doubt in the community. Tether appears to have laid those concerns to rest after an assurance report from Cayman Islands-based Moore Cayman confirmed that USDT tokens are fully backed by reserves.
The assurance report, which isn’t the same as an audit, came a month after Tether settled an $18.5 million fine with the Office of the New York Attorney General. As part of the settlement, Tether agreed to produce periodic filings proving its reserve status.