Circle’s USD Coin Surpasses Tether in April Transaction Volume


In a dramatic shift within the realm of cryptocurrency, the formerly unassailable reign of Tether (USDT), the eminent king of stablecoins, faces stiff competition from an unexpected rival. Circle’s USD Coin (USDC) has managed to pull off an improbable triumph, surpassing Tether in recorded transaction volume for the month of April 2024, as revealed by on-chain analytics provided by the global payments behemoth, Visa.

This noteworthy development signals a pivotal change within the landscape of stablecoins. The impressive market capitalization of Tether, which sits well beyond the $110 billion mark, appears to be overshadowed by the popularity of USDC. Despite a more modest valuation of $33 billion, USDC emerges as the more vigorously active coin in terms of trade.

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The insightful data provided by Visa discloses that USDC racked up an impressive $456 billion in transaction volume last week alone. In comparison, Tether fell significantly short with a total transaction volume of $89 billion. This represents an astounding 400% increase favoring USDC.

USDC’s victory did not sprout spontaneously overnight. Instead, it has been part of a continuous and gradual ascent aimed at chipping away at Tether’s dominance, a battle which started intensifying in late 2023. Visa’s records reveal that for the first time, in December 2023, USDC surpassed Tether in monthly transactions with a count of 145 million as opposed to Tether’s 127 million. Fast forward to April, USDC strengthened this trend by recording over 166 million transactions, edging past Tether’s close 164 million.

Experts are looking towards a few probable factors that could be fueling USDC’s spectacular rise. Increased global regulatory scrutiny around Tether’s reserves coupled with persistent concerns regarding its transparency could be driving users towards USDC, viewed as a more regulated and auditable stablecoin. In addition, USDC’s strategic alliance with Visa itself could be a contributing factor to its growing success. The prominence of USDC being featured on Visa’s stablecoin analytics dashboard, which was unveiled in April, might be serving to attract a new legion of users.

Yet, it’s important to note that despite USDC’s laudable surge in transaction volumes, Tether continues to hold its crown when it comes to market capitalization. Its considerable $110 billion overshadows USDC’s $33 billion, signaling a larger total value of outstanding coins. This indicates that for a great number of cryptocurrency investors, Tether continues to be the go-to coin for value storage, even if they aren’t as consistently active in trading it.

Moreover, Tether can claim a notably larger user base, suggesting wider usability, or perhaps larger individual transactions. In spite of USDC processing more transactions in April, over 34 million unique wallets engaged with Tether compared to USDC’s 9.57 million.

The duel between USDC and Tether is far from reaching its conclusion. USDC’s recent string of victories in transaction volume is indicative of its expanding influence in the cryptocurrency field. However, Tether, with its well-established user base and dominant market cap, won’t easily relinquish its throne.

The shapes of both these stablecoins’ destinies will be significantly impacted by the transforms in regulatory laws and shifting user preferences for transparency and security. Only time will tell whether USDC can keep up its pace to challenge Tether’s market cap advantage, or whether Tether can recover its transaction volume lead. This is an intriguing space to watch as the future of stablecoin plays out.