2019 has proven a huge year for the development of stablecoins and decentralized finance, particularly in regards to projects built on the Ethereum blockchain. An excellent and thorough report by


, building on recent work by


, Stable Report, and


, undertook a vast study of the current ecosystem of stablecoins, and uncovered a wealth of remarkable insights.
Some highlights: Firstly, since the beginning of 2017, over 200 projects have been announced, but only 30% are yet to be publicly launched, with 66 public and active stablecoins in circulation at the time of writing. The report went on to state that 2019/2010 is likely to be the biggest annum as yet in regards to stablecoins going live.
Of the stablecoins that have launched, 50% of all active stablecoins are developed on the Ethereum network. Further, USD-backed stablecoins like Tether, Coinbase’s USDCoin, and Gemini’s Gemini Dollar are the most active, while those backed by gold are the most likely to have failed. Of all stablecoins in existence, Tether has garnered the most amount of funding, with over $1 billion raised through an IEO this year.

Stablecoin 101

To begin, here’s some background information on stablecoins as stated in Consensys original

State of Stablecoins

(written by Nathan Sexer).
Stablecoins are crypto-assets that maintain a stable value against a target price (e.g. USD). Stablecoins are designed for any (decentralized) application which requires a low threshold of volatility to be viable on a blockchain.
Volatility prevents the widespread adoption of cryptocurrencies as a store of value. Because they are subject to huge fluctuations, they do not represent a proper means of exchange nor unit of account. Indeed, no business would ever be likely to accept digital currency when their value can drastically drop the day after.
Volatility also makes it harder for anyone to accept a currency as a “unit,” since there is no common acceptance on how much it may be worth, or will be worth. A measuring unit, by definition, should remain stable. So volatility transforms what were meant to be cryptocurrencies into speculative crypto-assets. With less volatility, crypto-assets may have reached a much broader audience already.

Volatility has a number of causes, including:

  • constantly shifting public perception

  • emerging markets

  • static monetary policies

  • unregulated markets

Stablecoin Use Cases

Examples of applications in which volatility must be reduced:

  1. Remittance, to cover price deltas while payments are being processed

  2. Commerce & Payments, for any business to accept day-to-day payments, fiat or cryptos avoiding volatility

  3. Salaries & Rents or any other recurring payment

  4. Lending & Prediction markets (long-term issuances)

  5. Trading & Wealth management. In this case, stablecoins are needed because they:
    • Enable denomination of trading pairs in US dollars instead of bitcoin or ether
    • Enable exposure to fiat-rates (other than ETH or BTC)
    • Enable an easier visibility and adoption by simply showing fluctuations in fiats
    • Enable arbitrage opportunities

  6. Store of value, for long-term hedging: e.g. miners to cover recurring cost ensuring a stable income

In other words, anyone that wants to benefit from advantages of blockchain technology (transparency, security, immutability…) without losing guarantees (e.g. trust and stability) provided by fiat currencies needs a stable cryptocurrency.

Types of Stablecoins

Three main categories of stablecoins exist — all very well detailed in overviews previously mentioned, which we will use to categorize in the mapping to follow:


IOU “Centralized” stablecoins / backed by fiat currencies or commodities collateral-backed. Examples of these include Tether, USD Coin, Gemini, and Digix.


IOU “Decentralized” stablecoins / backed by crypto and/or multiple assets, collateral-backed. Examples of this kind of stablecoin include MakerDAO, Steem, and Alchemint.


Seigniorage Shares / Decentralized Bank / Algorithmic stabilization mechanisms. Examples of this kind of stablecoin include Terra, Ampleforth, and Element Zero

The Most Popular Blockchain for Stablecoins

Ethereum is the clear stablecoin leader with 33 stablecoins developed atop the protocol. Bitshares comes in second with 8 stablecoin and Stellar rounds out the pack at third with 6 stablecoins. Ethereum’s dominance is due to a number of reasons. First, Ethereum benefited from its first-mover advantage and early projects like MakerDAO opted to issue dai on top of Ethereum. Secondly, stablecoins on Ethereum benefit from robust existing infrastructure and the ease of using ERC20 token standards.
For example, there’s already compatibility with wallets, exchanges, and analysis tools like




, MyCrypto, and more. When new stablecoins intend to expand and grow rapidly, it’s easier to do so on Ethereum as opposed to other blockchains. Ethereum’s enterprise versions, such as Quorum utilized by JP Morgan have further developed Ethereum as the prime candidate for stablecoin issuance.

Stablecoin Funding

Initial exchange offerings have been trending in 2019 as a new way to raise capital in the crypto industry. Notably, Tether completed an IEO raising over $1 billion dollars. While Tether overshadowed much of its competition in terms of fundraising, other top stablecoins projects and companies still raised over $500 million dollars in capital over the past two years. For example, Coinbase’s USD Coin raised over $200 million through three funding rounds.

Venture capitalists understand that if a stablecoin succeeds, it could generate impressive profits. Top firms, like Digital Currency Group, Blockchain Capital, and Andreessen Horowitz have heavily invested in crypto, specifically in stablecoins. In fact nearly half of all active stablecoins are venture-backed.
The amount of stablecoins has rapidly grown throughout the past two years. So, while the pioneering stablecoins, such as Tether, TrustToken, and Dai still hold a predominant amount of market share but the competition is rapidly approaching. Certainly, not all of these projects will succeed, but the drastic increase in stablecoins over the past two years clearly demonstrates that many individuals, entrepreneurs, and businesses believe stablecoins will have a large impact on the world.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of stablecoins currently live or in production:

IOU Centralized, Collateral-Backed Stablecoins

Backed by fiat (or traditional assets) reserves


: Coinbase’s dollar-pegged currency.

Gemini Dollar

: USD-pegged stablecoin backed by the Gemini exchange.


: USD-backed stable tokens (


) built on Omni, market-leader.



TrustToken Team

): USD-backed stable cryptocurrency (


) focusing on transparency, built on Ethereum.

Digix Gold Tokens

: Gold-Stable tokens (


). 1DGX = 1 gram of gold in a Singapore vault.


(by Stasis): Fiat-collateralized EIP-20 stable token backed by EUR, with verification streams, supported by STASIS.


: Stablecoins (GLX) pegged to a basket of fiat currencies held in custody.


: USD-pegged stablecoin backed by Paxos Standard.


: Reykjavik-based Monerium is approved by the Financial Supervisory Authority of Iceland and backed by a basket of financial instruments.


: A USD-pegged stablecoin by the Stronghold financial services.


(by Jibrel Network): Stablecoins (jUSD, jEUR…) backed by a wide range of assets, built on the Ethereum blockchain.


(by dfinity-network): IOU stablecoins (PHI) backed by loan collaterals maintained algorithmically.


: Asset-backed cryptocurrency (SGA) maintained with a reserve held in a regulated banking institution, stable against SDR (basket of currencies).

PHP Bitspark

: A stablecoin by the Bitspark exchange, pegged to the Philippine Peso.


: A gold-backed stablecloin by Hellogold


: Created by Facebook and expected to launch in 2020, backed by a ‘basket of financial assets.’


: Reserve-backed stablecoins (StableUSD) with a supply adjusted via open market operations.

eToro Native Tokens

: Gibraltar-based exchange has launched a series of stablecoins pegged to global currencies, including the eToro Ruble (RUBX) and eToro Yuan (CNYX)
THBEX: Introduced by Everex, THBEX is a stablecoin pegged to Thai Bhat

Stronghold USD

(by Stronghold & IBM): USD token backed by multiple fiat currencies based on the Stellar network, guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

USD Coin

(by Circle & CENTRE): Fiat tokens (USDC) for crypto payments and trading (using


, a framework for stablecoins project involving real-world asset reserves, issued by CENTRE network members and audited by CENTRE).


: Stable cryptocurrency (X8X) backed by a basket of fiat currencies and physical gold reserve.

“Semi-Decentralized,” Collateral-Backed Stablecoins

Backed by crypto-assets.


: Stable cryptocurrency (Smarctoins:




) with value backed by multiple assets (including cryptos) using derivative instruments.


: Stablecoins (nUSD) backed by fees, a distributed collateral pool and issuance mechanisms).


: Decentralized system issuing stablecoins (


), stable against ETH and backed by multiple assets (only ETH for now but aim to open a multi-collateral version). Maintained by MKR holders. Assimilable to derivatives instruments.


: Stablecoins backed by ETH with a system matching speculators to buy tokens against hedgers who buy “stablecoins” (Staticoin) to create stability.


: Stablecoins (SDUSD) built on top of NEO, backed by a pool of assets (fiats and cryptocurrencies).


: Digital tokens (A-EUR, their € stable token) targeted to fiat currencies copycatting their mechanisms using stability reserves and smart contracts.




): Stable crypto-assets (Boreals) backed by a combination of ether reserves, debt from loans, and dapp endorsement.


: Stable tokens pegged to fiat currencies, backed by a diversified, overcollateralized, and auditable crypto-asset reserve.


(EOSDT):An EOS-based stablecoin pegged to 1USD and collateralized by other digital assets.



Reserve Research Team

): Tokens stabilized by crypto-assets locked in a smart contract, “fully” decentralized.


: On-chain collateral-backed stablecoins (Bridgecoins).


: Stablecoins backed by multiple cryptocurrencies and simple reserve mechanisms.

Seigniorage Shares

Acting as a (partially) decentralized bank and incorporating elastic supply mechanisms. Often involve some collateral positions, algorithmic regulations and complex stability mechanisms [Further readings



BitBay Official

: Cryptocurrency (BAY) aimed to be stabilized via a dynamic peg using “liquid” and “frozen” tokens and decentralized governance mechanisms.


: Cryptocurrency (


) stabilized by issuance mechanisms and custodial grants.


(by Steemit): Tokens (


) to be stabilized on the Steem blockchain with a 1:1 USD conversion rate — based on a convertible notes system.


: Cryptocurrency monitored (Carbon) by an elastic supply through market participants, powered by Hedera Hashgraph.


: Cryptocurrency whose price is maintained by an automated inflation/deflation control.


: Stable (low-volatility) tokens (USD Fragment) with an auditable reserve and monetary supply policy.


(by Kowala Tech): Cryptocurrency (kCoin) to be stable against fiats, cryptos and other types of assets maintained with algorithms and market-based oracles.


: Stable cryptocurrency (Polys) backed by a basket of assets stabilized by the Topl foundation that issues and redeems tokens.


: Tokens (


) to be stabilized through a flexible supply and demand with inflation containment mechanisms.


: Tokens whose price is maintained via multiple stabilization mechanisms involving a DAO, cryptocurrencies reserves applying various monetary systems.


: Cryptocurrency pegged to a basket of currencies (e.g. SDR) and assets with its value algorithmically stabilized; involves decentralized elastic supply mechanisms.

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