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Stablecoin insurance firm Bridge Mutual to protect against possible Tether depegging

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While the value of stablecoins like Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC) is designed to be pegged to another asset, such as the U.S. dollar, the crypto industry has fretted for years about the possibility of a major depegging — especially amid U.S. regulatory concerns about Tether, which has a current market capitalization of over $63 billion.

Now one company intends to provide discretionary coverage for investors against that scenario — and Tether itself is backing the play.

Bridge Mutual aims to mitigate the risk of loss of funds resulting from hacked or exploited smart contracts, exchange hacks or theft, price crashes in stablecoins, and other digital asset vulnerabilities.

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Stablecoin insurance is uncomplicated in principle. If a stablecoin drops beneath its peg for a set period of time, the policyholder can make a claim. Oracles check the current price of the stablecoin and then pay the investor back the overall difference between the current price and the peg — but in a different stablecoin.

“Smart contract vulnerabilities have become a massive risk in decentralized finance, and they are a leading cause in the loss of millions of dollars in consumer funds,” said Paolo Ardoino, CTO of Tether. “With the introduction of Bridge Mutual, we hope to guard against future hacks and build more trust in DeFi products.”

As Bridge Mutual moves toward a decentralized governance model, Tether has been quick to express support financially. The stablecoin issuer has earmarked $500,000 for token acquisition — as has Bitfinex, the cryptocurrency exchange that is closely tied to Tether Limited through its ownership. Those tokens should ensure that both companies have a stake in Bridge Mutual’s governance.

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Mike Miglio, Founder of Bridge Mutual, explained that “Tether and Bitfinex have already shown great support to the project by connecting us with many other esteemed projects that have now become our partners, and they have also committed to helping us market Bridge Mutual, improve the design, and integrate it into other platforms and systems.”

Policyholders deposit their tethers into pools to use as collateral, and in exchange for their stakes they can also share in profits from the platform and earn yield, according to Miglio.

“Billions of dollars of volume a day are moved to and from stablecoins, with people and institutions trusting implicitly that the value of a stablecoin will remain stable,” continued Miglio. “If coverage for stablecoins was readily available and easy to use, everyone would be able to increase their exposure to the cryptocurrency market without losing sleep over whether all of the value they have parked in stables could drop to zero overnight.”

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Tether To Test Notabene’s Travel Rule System to Comply With AML Laws

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Tether Holdings Limited is set to combat cross-border crime and money laundering by integrating Notabene, an end-to-end solution for the FATF’s Crypto Travel Rule.

Tether Holdings Limited, the issuer of the largest stablecoin by market cap, USDT, recently announced integrating Notabene to manage regulatory and counterparty risk in crypto transactions.

Tether to Crack Down on Illegal Transfers

As per an announcement on Tuesday, Tether will be testing the Notabene platform to comply with the Crypto Travel Rule —a mandate established on June 20, 2021, by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

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Notabene’s end-to-end solution will allow Tether to crack down on illegal transfer by transmitting user data for large cryptocurrency transfers to VASPs.

The Travel Rule stipulates that Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) must comply with the same laws as regulated financial institutions and mandatory organizations. VASPs must carry out KYC (Know Your Customer) processes and exchange related client information between counterparties when transferring a certain amount of digital assets.

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Tether is “Fully Committed To Transparency”

The move comes after Tether has been under scrutiny by regulatory agencies like the U.S. Commodity and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), which fined Tether and its parent company Bitfinex to pay fines worth $42.5 million over misleading claims about the USDT token.

Tether claims to comply with global regulatory guidelines and to fully commit to transparency.

“It’s important that we work with other large VASPS to build this industry from the ground up. As pioneers of blockchain technology and leaders in transparency, we are dedicated to not only keeping up with new rules but helping shape them. Because the Travel Rule traditionally applies to financial institutions, we see this as an opportune moment to foster cooperation across traditional and digital channels in order to create better services for customers globally.” Said Leonardo Real, CCO of Tether.

However, Tether’s detractors don’t think the same. As CryptoPotato reported, Bloomberg published a controversial report titled “Anyone Seen Tether’s Billions?” — claiming that the stablecoin issuer is a fraud as it doesn’t have the assets to back the USDT token.

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Hindenburg research offers $1m for disclosing exclusive Tether information

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  • Hindenburg has accused Tether of lacking transparency in disclosing its backing reserves. The firm says that this secrecy puts Tether’s investors at risk.
  • It isn’t the first time that Tether is facing accusations of irregular dealings. It has also come under fire for alleged market manipulation.

Hindenburg Research announced a one million bounty on information disclosing Tether’s (USDT). backing reserves. The forensic financial researcher has expressed its doubts about the stablecoin’s backing. 

According to Hindenburg, Tether’s secrecy on the matter exposes its investors to risk. This claim follows another by Alex Mashinsky that it was minting new USDT for cryptos. Such minting contravenes Tether’s terms. Mr. Mashinsky is Celsius’ CEO>

Today, Tether stands among the top 10 cryptocurrencies in the market. But, these claims might make it lose credibility within the crypto sector. The forensic financial firm says that it’s vital that Tether discloses its backing.

Now, its users can take advantage of this opportunity to earn a bounty. All they need to do is help the firm dig out the secrets surrounding the Tether stablecoin.

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Hindenburg is a financial firm dedicated to the exploration of financial research. It seeks solutions for major stress points within the financial and crypto space. Its diversified functions enable it to look into different financial aspects include credits, derivatives.

How Hindenburg plays a role in this research

Hindenburg is well-versed in offering the best investment advice. Besides identifying financial irregularities, it tracks financial fraud and illegal monetary connections. Since its start, it has been producing reports on different projects. It also maintains their progression of its platform.

Tether has kept mum on its possible fraudulent activity. It insists that it holds $1 is to every 1USDT on the company’s US dollar traditional reserves. But, it also stated that a good amount of USDT has its backing from US commercial paper. This factor places it at the most-coveted position in the commercial paper market.

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Not its first rodeo

In 2019, Tether found itself facing accusations of market manipulation. Additionally, it faced allegations of not disclosing all USDT risks to its users. It wasn’t alone in this as crypto exchange Bitfinex also found itself in the same scandal. Both companies were lucky after a court ruled against half of the plaintiffs’ claims.

But, New York’s district attorney general ordered an end of their activity in the state. Everyone is trying to understand why Tether finds itself in illegal claims. 

It’s a viable hedge against the volatility connected to other cryptocurrencies. But it isn’t doing enough to bring trust back from its users.

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Tether on the spotlight for minting new USDT used for crypto-loan collateral

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  • Tether faces more headwinds as one of its big customers, Celsius Network, confirms giving other cryptocurrencies as loan collaterals.
  • The loan agreement varies depending on crypto volatility, Celsius Network says, with higher crypto collaterals when crypto prices fall.

One of Tether’s major customers, Celsius Network quasi bank, says Tether lends out new stablecoins (USDT) in return for cryptocurrencies. This is contrary to the company’s current terms of service which state that “only money will be accepted upon issuance.” Alex Mashinsky, the CEO of Celsius Network, told the Financial Times;

If you give them enough collateral, liquid collateral, Bitcoin, Ethereum and so on . . . they will mint tether against it,

Additionally, he says “new USDT is issued for such loans,” then destroyed once the loan is closed. This strategy “does not permanently increase USDT in circulation,” he adds.

Launched in 2014, Tether’s USDT is the world’s leading stablecoin with a $70 billion market cap. The token’s utility mainly lies in providing easier ways to trade other crypto assets. As its name holds and as its white paper reads, Tether is backed to the US dollar at a ratio of 1:1.

In recent years, however, the stablecoin operator has been the subject of regulatory and media scrutiny. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the New York attorney-general’s office claimed misrepresentation of the firm’s reserves. Tether neither confirmed nor denied these claims, but was fined $41 million for the same. CNF also reported that Bloomberg Media had put forth similar claims which Tether threw out claiming a plot to defame it.

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Tether disputes claims of reserve Mmsrepresentation

In a primer published in May this year, the company says,

Newly issued [USDT] must be backed by collateral” and that “redeemed [USDT] tokens are not released back into circulation unless new collateral has been provided.

All through, however, the stablecoin issuer has declined to clarify its alleged crypto-lending feature or whether it was minting new tokens through it. Instead, it has issued the following statement:

We have a select, small group of customers that borrow USDTs in exchange for posting security. These loans are secured by collateral in Tether’s possession of well in excess of 100 percent of the loan proceeds and earn monthly interest. Our lending program was first disclosed long ago in our reserves breakdown and is not a secret.

But as Mashinsky notes, their USDT loans are typically 30 percent over collateralized, and amounts vary with volatility. Should Bitcoin, for instance drop, the company has to give Tether more of the crypto asset.

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Of note, Celsius, which US regulators are after for unregistered offerings, had borrowed $1B worth of USDT from Tether earlier this month.

Among its many troubles, Tether is now battling a US class-action lawsuit. Plaintiffs allege Tether issued unbacked USDTs to purchase Bitcoin and manipulate the market. The company has disengaged itself from such claims, calling the case “shambles” and a “clumsy attempt at a money grab.” The firm has also made a micro win as a federal judge dismissed half of these claims last month.

  • Tether faces more headwinds as one of its big customers, Celsius Network, confirms giving other cryptocurrencies as loan collaterals.
  • The loan agreement varies depending on crypto volatility, Celsius Network says, with higher crypto collaterals when crypto prices fall.

One of Tether’s major customers, Celsius Network quasi bank, says Tether lends out new stablecoins (USDT) in return for cryptocurrencies. This is contrary to the company’s current terms of service which state that “only money will be accepted upon issuance.” Alex Mashinsky, the CEO of Celsius Network, told the Financial Times;

If you give them enough collateral, liquid collateral, Bitcoin, Ethereum and so on . . . they will mint tether against it,

Additionally, he says “new USDT is issued for such loans,” then destroyed once the loan is closed. This strategy “does not permanently increase USDT in circulation,” he adds.

Advertisement

Launched in 2014, Tether’s USDT is the world’s leading stablecoin with a $70 billion market cap. The token’s utility mainly lies in providing easier ways to trade other crypto assets. As its name holds and as its white paper reads, Tether is backed to the US dollar at a ratio of 1:1.

In recent years, however, the stablecoin operator has been the subject of regulatory and media scrutiny. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the New York attorney-general’s office claimed misrepresentation of the firm’s reserves. Tether neither confirmed nor denied these claims, but was fined $41 million for the same. CNF also reported that Bloomberg Media had put forth similar claims which Tether threw out claiming a plot to defame it.

Tether disputes claims of reserve Mmsrepresentation

In a primer published in May this year, the company says,

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Newly issued [USDT] must be backed by collateral” and that “redeemed [USDT] tokens are not released back into circulation unless new collateral has been provided.

All through, however, the stablecoin issuer has declined to clarify its alleged crypto-lending feature or whether it was minting new tokens through it. Instead, it has issued the following statement:

We have a select, small group of customers that borrow USDTs in exchange for posting security. These loans are secured by collateral in Tether’s possession of well in excess of 100 percent of the loan proceeds and earn monthly interest. Our lending program was first disclosed long ago in our reserves breakdown and is not a secret.

But as Mashinsky notes, their USDT loans are typically 30 percent over collateralized, and amounts vary with volatility. Should Bitcoin, for instance drop, the company has to give Tether more of the crypto asset.

Of note, Celsius, which US regulators are after for unregistered offerings, had borrowed $1B worth of USDT from Tether earlier this month.

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Among its many troubles, Tether is now battling a US class-action lawsuit. Plaintiffs allege Tether issued unbacked USDTs to purchase Bitcoin and manipulate the market. The company has disengaged itself from such claims, calling the case “shambles” and a “clumsy attempt at a money grab.” The firm has also made a micro win as a federal judge dismissed half of these claims last month.

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