A fee of just $0.43 was paid to create $150 million worth of ERC-20 tokens with Tether’s market cap now rising to above $3.3 billion.
“This is authorized but not issued,” Paolo Ardoino, Bitfinex CTO said, meaning “these tethers were created in the treasury wallet that will be used to full fill future issuance requests.”
Last time we looked, on May 26th 2019, Tether had printed $500 million eth based USDT in total, with about $45 million authorized, but not issued.
That $45 million has presumably been taken up, so they’ve now minted $150 million more, about a third of all previous eth USDT, for whoever wants them.
With that generally being China. According to a report by Diar, China accounts for more than 60% of tether’s volumes. They say:
“Data provided to Diar by blockchain analysis firm Chainalysis highlights the magnitude of Chinese Tether demand with over $16Bn received by exchanges based in that market in 2018. This year the number has already surpassed an outstanding $10Bn, setting the stage for the biggest year yet.”
It’s not clear whether anything can be read by the fact this was issued on eth rather than the bitcoin based omni which has far more tokens running on it:
There’s still $165 million to be taken up on bitcoin, while in eth it’s actually not very clear what that’s saying in light of Ardoino’s comment above.
The page itself shows eth USDT has grown from $500 million to $650 million with only about $3 million authorized, but not issued.
Whether someone has taken up this tether after Ardoino’s comment earlier today, is not clear, but apparently they issue tether on tron too and they even have 50 cent on eos.
Why do it over all these different blockchains, is not clear, but it may be they receive eth for the eth usdt, btc for the omni, and so on.
Or there’s no relation whatever between the crypto and the blockchain they’re using. However, the eth based USDT can far more easily be integrated with say eth decentralized exchanges.
So these $150 million ERC20 tokens do most likely have something to do with eth more than bitcoin or 50 cent.
Raising the question whether China is perhaps thinking of giving ethereum a try as it hasn’t quite debuted there even in narration as far as we are aware.
Yet China has been dominating ethereum Google searches since we can recall, with Solidity too ranking quite highly there.
Obviously in China they use Baidu quite a bit more, with information somewhat difficult to come out, but there have been some “stunts” where they’ve entered censored documents literally on ethereum’s blockchain, readable as if on a website.
So there is some awareness of ethereum, but they have been blockaded by the Chinese central bank starting in late 2017.
Since then there were numerous attempts to bypass the blockade leading to what now can be called a pipeline with USDT at the heart of it.
Chinese residents buy tether in a peer to peer manner Over the Counter (OTC) and then usually convert it to whatever other crypto in mainly centralized crypto-only exchanges.
Meaning what may have been a testing ground to see whether cryptos can be banned has clearly very badly failed.
They may now try and go further to even outright ban it with India here potentially being the testing ground.
A proposed draft law there says that exchanges themselves can potentially face up to ten years in prison, as well as anyone who possesses bitcoin.
Meaning centralized exchanges here, even if they are crypto only, wouldn’t work very well. They can’t arrest a smart contract though. With decentralized exchanges now finally made a reality by ethereum, these ERC20 USDT can be exchanged for any crypto, even bitcoin.
Nor would anyone be able to know that you have, bought, or sold bitcoin or eth as long as you use a VPN because the smart contract of course doesn’t ask for any ID or anything at all.
Making tether the rebel in quite a change now that it has largely proven itself to work and do so mostly in a “proper” manner with concerns of course because here there are counterparties, but so too there are in the blockade or worse, in Indian totalitarianism.