• Sat. Jun 22nd, 2024

Circle-Active USDC Wallets Grew 59% in 2023

Walter Swift

ByWalter Swift

Jan 23, 2024
Circle-Active USDC Wallets Grew 59% in 2023

The “State of the USDC Economy” report published by Circle, the stablecoin issuer on January 15, pegged the number of USDC wallets with a balance of at least $10 at over 2.7 million, representing an over 59% growth year-over-year. The growth occurred despite multiple challenges, including a fall in market cap from around $45 billion to only $25 billion in 2023.

Circle also touted its blockchain interoperability in the report, boasting of the USDC stablecoin availability in 15 blockchains, making it one of the most versatile virtual tokens on the market.

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The report comes amid the recent filing for an IPO by Circle, making it seem like a strategic move to gain the confidence of both US financial regulators and potential investors in the company if it goes public. The USDC is currently the second-largest stablecoin by market capitalization globally, second only to the USDT.

About the Report

The USDC report revealed how the total outstanding USDC token circulation took a massive hit, dropping from $45 billion to about $25 billion by the end of November. Circle blamed the decline on regulatory crackdowns, fraud, and rising interest rates, demonstrating the depth of issues in the digital currency industry.

However, the Circle study touts many wins of the digital currency over the past year, proudly pointing out how the number of active USDC wallets with $10 worth of the stablecoin or more rose by 59% over the past year, a statistic almost irreconcilable with the massive drop in the market cap of the currency.

Additionally, Circle also claims to have settled over $12 trillion in blockchain transactions since its 2018 launch. In a similar flex, stablecoin issuer boasts of bridging over $197 billion between blockchain and the conventional banking system through minting and redeeming in 2023 alone.

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The report also observes the global gaps in currency digitalization and financial inclusion, and how stablecoins like the USDC can help bridge the gap. With a focus on South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America, there is no doubt that Circle has plans to expand its services outside North America.

While the report mostly reads as a gigantic advertisement and vision statement for Circle and USDC, it undoubtedly carries some essential information about the current state of stablecoins and how Circle plans to further financial inclusion using its digital currency.

Circle Hopes for Global Regulatory Clarity

A section of the report explores recent regulations relating to stablecoins and the cryptocurrency industry in general, hoping that the proposed regulatory frameworks advance regulatory clarity for institutional and individual holders of the USDC stablecoin.

The report also discusses the proposed MiCA regulations in Europe, hailing its potential uniformity across the entire EU region. It also expresses optimism about a quick conclusion of the regulatory framework, offering cryptocurrency users in the EU regulatory certainty when acquiring, holding, and selling stablecoins and crypto assets.

Still discussing regulations, Circle explores the possibility of integrating trusted stablecoins, like the USDC, into the global economy to simplify cross-border transactions and other forms of digital currency exchange that were otherwise out of reach.

2023 was a Tumultuous Year

Additionally, Circle acknowledged that last year has been challenging, especially for a stablecoin issuer. A mix of regulatory pressure, fraud, and general market correction heavily brought down the value of USDC in circulation to $25 billion in November, a 44% decline from its $45 billion figure in January.

While Circle theorized several reasons for the decline, it willfully ignored the biggest: the USDT. Despite the intense regulatory pressure of the USDT amid a row with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), things are going well for the stablecoin, with its nearly $95 billion market cap almost four times that of USDC.

Circle was careful not to mention USDT in its report, probably to avoid addressing the possibility that the Tether-issued stablecoin has the upper hand in becoming the industry standard for a dollar stablecoin. For now, the stablecoin issuer is only interested in discussing its wins from 2023 while hoping that its IPO filing is successful. 

The report might be one of the tools it’ll need to reset the narrative and achieve its numerous 2024 goals.

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Walter Swift

Walter Swift

Walter Swift is an adept crypto writer, known for his deep insights into the decentralized world. His pieces artfully break down complex blockchain topics, making them accessible to a broad audience. With a passion for emerging technologies, Walter's articles are a beacon for crypto enthusiasts and novices alike.

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