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Decentralized Exchange (DEX) Trading Volumes Surged Nearly 250% Amid Stablecoin Crisis

During the stablecoin crisis earlier this week, which saw the value of USDC, the second-largest stablecoin by market capitalization, drop to $0.87 before recovering, DEXs saw a huge increase in trading volume.

This market was USDC’s all-time low, according to CryptoCompare’s latest Market Analysis blog article, and came after Circle announced that $3.3 billion (roughly 8% of its entire reserves) was stored in the now-defunct Silicon Valley Bank.

Due to a panic-induced bank run, US regulators collapsed Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) last week, the second-largest collapse of a major US bank in history. DAI has since lost its peg, and a sizable percentage of the cryptocurrency-based stablecoin is backed by USDC.

SVB was recognized for being sympathetic to cryptocurrencies and had strong ties to the venture capital business, making it a popular choice among individuals in the digital asset market. The abrupt demise of SVB put tremendous strain on Circle and its stablecoin, USDC.

As authorities intervened, the matter was quickly rectified, with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) guaranteeing depositors that they would be reimbursed. Yet, before the FDIC intervened, traders were quickly shifting their funds. The situation deteriorated when Coinbase, a member of the ENTRE Consortium behind USDC, announced that redemptions to USD had been blocked over the weekend. Following the announcement, many traders are likely to have moved to decentralized exchanges in search of other options.

According to CryptoCompare, DEX volumes jumped by 249% on March 11th, going from $7.14 billion to $25.0 billion. Meanwhile, Ethereum’s gas fees, which represent network activity, reached a high of 101 Gwei, the highest level thus far in 2023. According to CryptoCompare’s analysis, recent events have emphasized crypto’s strong reliance on the existing financial system and exposed flaws with centralized stablecoins, raising concerns about crypto’s fragility, as the largest stablecoins are vulnerable to problems in traditional banking.

Circle, it adds, has demonstrated efficient collateral reserve management, with 77% held in short-dated Treasury Bills at BNY Mellon and the remaining cash now secured. This displays a prudent and efficient reserve structure, instilling trust in Circle’s capacity to navigate any challenges with traditional banking.


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