Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) said the “landscape is shifting,’ concerning stablecoin movements triggered by recent regulatory pressures.
Tether gains at BUSD’s expense
The Binance CEO tweeted details of changes in the valuations of the top three stablecoins. He said BUSD’s market cap had fallen by almost $2.5 billion to $13.7 billion — a 15% decrease, sinking to a 14-month low.
USDC’s market cap also declined — albeit to a lesser extent — falling 1.7% to $41.5 billion.
Tether is the winner in all this, recording a 3.5% increase in market cap to $70.1 billion — posting a 15-month high in the process.
“BUSD market cap dropped -$2.45B (from 16.1B to 13.7B as of now), and most of it has moved to USDT.
USDT marketcap + 2.37B (From 67.8B to 70.1B)
USDC also declined -739M (from 42.3B to 41.5B).”
Changes in stablecoin valuations suggest the market is concerned about recent crackdowns against BUSD, as levied by the SEC and New York Department of Financial Services (NYFDS).
Despite long-running issues with Tether — regarding its reserves and whether the company is sufficiently liquid to meet its liabilities — it seems out of all the major stablecoins, Tether has the most trust from market participants.
On Feb. 16, Tether released a blog post detailing its continued reduction in commercial paper exposure. The company claimed USDT is now 81% backed by cash and cash equivalents.
Binance in hot water?
On Feb. 13, the SEC issued a Wells notice to BUSD-issuer Paxos over allegations the stablecoin is an unregistered security. Shortly after, the NYDFS ordered Paxos to stop BUSD issuance.
CZ has distanced Binance from the enforcement actions — most recently in the above tweet — saying, “BUSD is NOT issued by Binance.”
Binance U.S. is under investigation over potential violations of money laundering rules. Binance Chief Strategy Officer Patrick Hillmann played down the reports, saying the company is in touch with “virtually every regulator across the globe on a daily basis.”
On Feb. 16, Reuters reported details of an inappropriate $404 million transfer from Binance U.S. to a company managed by CZ.