Stablecoins have become an essential part of the blockchain economy. These tokens keep their value correlated to a traditional fiat currency – usually the US Dollar – and therefore offer a place for investors to keep their assets within the crypto ecosystem without having to go through the painful process of off-ramping them into regular fiat in order to realize their value or use them for payment.
They also facilitate the lending and borrowing of money in the crypto economy. These digital safe havens help build confidence in the wider crypto economy and promote its growth. One of the most widely-used and well-known stablecoins is USD Coin, or USDC.
What is USDC?
USDC is afiat-collateralized stablecoin that is backed 1-to-1 by USD reserves in cash, cash equivalents and short-duration US government treasuries in segregated accounts. It’s backed by financial institutions that hold the reserves, guarantee the value of the digital token and ensure it is redeemable against the current value of the US Dollar. It was launched by Fintech company Circle in collaboration with the largest and most popular crypto exchange, Coinbase.
From a mere $950 million at inception, USDC is now the world’s fastest-growing, regulated and fully-reserved dollar digital currency at more than $30 billion in circulation. It has supported more than 1 trillion on-chain transactions over the last year and is an effective store of value and an efficient transferable payment currency.
What Are the Issues With Fiat-Backed Stablecoins?
Fiat-backing of digital currency is the most simple, straightforward and practical way to ensure the token does not decrease in value even if the entire crypto market vanishes overnight. Having the money stored somewhere off-chain as collateral, it gives the on-chain coin a value that does not deviate.
Of course there are a few important caveats to this. Chief among them is the issue of trust. Fiat stablecoins are backed by the institution issuing them, should that institution fail or there is malfeasance in governance of the coin, then it’s possible that the assets could disappear or be locked. The Centre Consortium, founded by Circle and Coinbase, provides standards governance for USDC. Centre may lock assets only under court order.. Of course, this is staggeringly unlikely, but it is one of the reasons decentralized coins like DAI have found favor with the crypto community.
Moreover, USDC is not currently legal tender in the United States, so there is no insurance offered by the US Government when it comes to the value of the coin. However, USDC is audited monthly by Grant Thornton, LLP, who checks that the funds are available to mint new USDC. It also follows all financial regulations imposed by the government and is run by a membership-based consortium that sets the policy and technical standards for stablecoins
Is USDC an ERC-20 token?
USDC started life as an ERC-20 token that lives on the Ethereum blockchain. However, since then, it has expanded and is now also deployable on Solana, Algorand, Stellar, Tron, and Hedera -blockchains. Over$30 billion of current USDC is still on Ethereum(as of 15th of October, 2021) and exists as ERC-20 .
Numio, as an ERC-20 token payments app, is a great way to hold these tokens in a safe manner while opening up the features it offers. This includes a fast transferral and deployment of your USDC to other people and trading it for other ERC-20 assets at a fraction of the cost that would be suffered otherwise.
It also gives you control of your USDC and means you don’t have to rely on the exchange to handle your funds, or be subjected to their fees when you want to obtain other ERC-20 assets like AAVE, STORJ and BAL. When dealing with ERC-20 tokens, including stablecoins, Numio is a high quality feature-rich wallet that addresses all the usual problems when transacting with these tokens, giving you total control over your digital assets.
Is USDC Hard to Get?
If you are new to the world of digital assets then getting cryptocurrencies can be a confusing prospect.
Numio makes it simple and is a great choice for managing USDC. With Numio you can send and receive your stored USDC instantly and at the touch of a button. If you want to try something a bit more advanced you can use Numio to trade and swap USDC.
Download Numio to get USDC
How can I get USDC?
Getting USDC is easy on Numio. You can use your credit or debit card to purchase USDC, you can swap or trade it for other ERC-20 tokens (up to 100x cheaper than other wallets), and you can send or receive it as a payment. Whatever way you choose you can be sure that you are always in full control of your USDC.
We aspire for digital assets to be used by billions to exchange trillions of dollars of value every day. This can only happen if the underlying money is sound. Read how we minimize USDC risk in this installment of our USDC Trust & Transparency series.