Global Crypto Market

Stablecoins And The Crypto Market Crash – Forbes Advisor UK – Forbes




The Forbes Advisor editorial team is independent and objective. To help support our reporting work, and to continue our ability to provide this content for free to our readers, we receive payment from the companies that advertise on the Forbes Advisor site. This comes from two main sources.
First, we provide paid placements to advertisers to present their offers. The payments we receive for those placements affects how and where advertisers’ offers appear on the site. This site does not include all companies or products available within the market.
Second, we also include links to advertisers’ offers in some of our articles. These “affiliate links” may generate income for our site when you click on them. The compensation we receive from advertisers does not influence the recommendations or advice our editorial team provides in our articles or otherwise impact any of the editorial content on Forbes Advisor.
While we work hard to provide accurate and up to date information that we think you will find relevant, Forbes Advisor does not and cannot guarantee that any information provided is complete and makes no representations or warranties in connection thereto, nor to the accuracy or applicability thereof.
The comparison service on our site is provided by Runpath Regulated Services Limited on a non-advised basis. Forbes Advisor has selected Runpath Regulated Services Limited to compare a wide range of loans in a way designed to be the most helpful to the widest variety of readers.
The Forbes Advisor editorial team is independent and objective. To help support our reporting work, and to continue our ability to provide this content for free to our readers, we receive payment from the companies that advertise on the Forbes Advisor site. This comes from two main sources.
First, we provide paid placements to advertisers to present their offers. The payments we receive for those placements affects how and where advertisers’ offers appear on the site. This site does not include all companies or products available within the market.
Second, we also include links to advertisers’ offers in some of our articles. These “affiliate links” may generate income for our site when you click on them. The compensation we receive from advertisers does not influence the recommendations or advice our editorial team provides in our articles or otherwise impact any of the editorial content on Forbes Advisor.
While we work hard to provide accurate and up to date information that we think you will find relevant, Forbes Advisor does not and cannot guarantee that any information provided is complete and makes no representations or warranties in connection thereto, nor to the accuracy or applicability thereof.
The comparison service on our site is provided by Runpath Regulated Services Limited on a non-advised basis. Forbes Advisor has selected Runpath Regulated Services Limited to compare a wide range of loans in a way designed to be the most helpful to the widest variety of readers.
Bitcoin, the bellwether for the crypto market, recently took a beating. Blame the stablecoins.
Last week, Bitcoin hit a 52-week low, slumping to $25,402 (£20,360), a level not seen since December 2020. The “digital gold” has since rebounded but, at the time of writing, it was still trading around $30,000 (£23,990).
Crypto and global equity markets have been selling off since the start of 2022, thanks to headwinds as varied as inflation, rising interest rates and the war in Ukraine.
The recent, massive market volatility, however, is something special, linked directly to the troubles of TerraUSD (UST). This once-popular stablecoin has imploded in a matter of days, losing 95% of its market cap since last weekend.
Let’s take a closer look at the stablecoin market to understand how the breakdown of one popular coin could crash the entire cryptocurrency market in a matter of days.
In cryptoland, stablecoins come in several flavours. But as the name suggests, a stablecoin aims to provide a “safe” digital asset that maintains a stable valuation.
Here’s how stablecoins work. Their value is pegged to the price of another asset, most commonly a fiat currency like the US dollar. The goal is for the stablecoin to maintain the same value as its peg.
With a dollar peg, one stablecoin should always be valued at one dollar, no matter what’s happening elsewhere in the market.
Today, the stablecoin Tether (USDT) is the third largest cryptocurrency by market cap. Both USDT and its fellow stablecoin USD Coin (USDC), are pegged to the US dollar. When you buy $10 of USDT, you expect it to be worth $10 tomorrow and $10 one year from now.
Featured Partner Offer
1
eToro
Cryptocurrencies Available For Trade
60+
Fees (Maker/Taker)
1%/1%
1
eToro
On eToro’s Website
TerraUSD is an entirely different beast than Tether or USD Coin. It’s an “algorithmic stablecoin,” backed by nothing more than the magic of computer code.
With an algorithmic stablecoin, a computer program maintains the crypto’s supply. Once you understand that there’s nothing but code backing up the likes of UST, you begin to see how things could have gone south so quickly.
So let’s dive into the whole mess of TerraUSD, which plunged as low as $0.23 (£0.18), far below its $1 (£0.80) peg. Crypto experts say the mechanisms behind TerraUSD were fundamentally flawed from the get-go.
In the TerraUSD system, a special crypto token called LUNA is used to help UST hold its 1-to-1 peg value with the U.S. dollar.
“This whole system is entirely broken because it rests on a speculative asset—LUNA—to be the collateral,” says Colin Aulds, founder of cryptocurrency storage company Privacy Pros. “The problem is that LUNA was created for the purpose of being collateral simply because the Terra ecosystem needed collateral.”
There was little that was stable, so to speak, behind this stablecoin other than its programmatic language.
LUNA was meant to buffer TerraUSD against market volatility, but it succumbed to extreme selling over recent days. Its trading price was knocked down to $0.03 (£0.02), at the time of writing. That’s down 99.9% since May 6.
“It was inevitable Terra crashed as the reliance on using other cryptocurrencies as collateral as well as the minting/burning mechanism of LUNA for Terra was not sufficient to survive any serious market volatility,” says Adam Carlton, CEO of crypto wallet PinkPanda.
In a bid to save TerraUSD, the Luna Foundation Guard (LFG), the nonprofit organisation that supports the Terra network, depleted its entire reserve of $3 billion (£2.4 billion) in Bitcoin. And it was the fund’s dumping of its Bitcoin reserves in a last-ditch effort to save UST that probably helped contribute to Bitcoin’s volatility.
While the sun may be setting on TerraUSD, it’s not all doom and gloom for the future of the crypto market.
Ric Edelman, founder of the Digital Assets Council of Financial Professionals and the author of The Truth About Crypto, says what happened this week was contagion: “During periods of panic, people sell indiscriminately. Soon, smart investors realise that’s silly, and they recognize that a big buying opportunity exists.”
Edelman expects a swift recovery in Bitcoin and Ethereum prices. In his opinion, too many people bought into TerraUSD without considering how the system actually worked, making the current situation all but inevitable.
With the implosion of TerraUSD, other stablecoins are under a microscope, particularly Tether. Remember, USDT is supposed to be backed by holdings of US dollars – and at time of writing, USDT has a market cap of $82 billion (£66 billion).
Sceptics allege that the organisation that runs Tether does not have $82 billion backing up its coin.
Last week, the market tested this thesis. USDT dipped to $0.97, briefly losing its peg to the U.S. dollar. It has since rebounded to parity, but its future health is now in question.
Crypto market participants expect a degree of slippage – one USDT is likely to be valued very slightly less than one dollar as one stablecoin is riskier than one dollar. But it doesn’t take very many pennies off the peg to vaporise market confidence for a stablecoin.
The market is clearly showing us that collateralized stablecoins are the future,” says Andrew Pesco, head of investment management at Domain Money.
Collateralized stablecoins like USD Coin (USDC) have proven to be resilient. USDC is still trading at $1, and it even experienced a high of $1.13.
Carlton says, “Despite all the harm done by the Terra foundation’s reckless approach to stablecoins, we will see the industry step up and create even more resilience in the markets.”
Featured Partner Offer
1
eToro
Cryptocurrencies Available For Trade
60+
Fees (Maker/Taker)
1%/1%
1
eToro
On eToro’s Website
The unwinding of TerraUSD caught the attention of US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who mentioned the possibility of stablecoin regulations after it was apparent that TerraUSD was in a meltdown and that a framework was needed to guard against the risks.
Edelman says there’s no question that more regulation is needed to protect US investors: “That effort is underway… and I’m confident that regs will be in place within the next couple of years, to everyone’s benefit,” he says.
Cryptocurrency in not regulated in the UK. The UK regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, has repeatedly warned investors that they risk losing all their money if they buy cryptocurrency, will not possibility of compensation.
My work has appeared in TheStreet, Mansion Global, CNN, CNN Money, DNAInfo, Yahoo Finance, MSN Money, and the New York Daily News. I’m an alumna of the London School of Economics and hold a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. Follow or DM me on Twitter at @farranpowell.
I'm a Consumer Finance Reporter for Forbes Advisor. I cover what's going on in the news and how it affects your bottom line. I've been featured as a personal finance expert in outlets like CNBC, Yahoo! Finance, CBS News Radio and more. I'm currently based in Paris, France where I am pursuing my master's degree in communication studies. Follow me on Twitter at @keywordkelly.

source


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.