Alameda Research Minted Over $39 Billion USDT, Amounting to Nearly Half of Tether’s Circulating Supply

A recent disclosure by Conor Grogan, Director at Coinbase, unveiled a noteworthy involvement of Alameda Research in the minting of Tether (USDT) tokens. Through meticulous on-chain data analysis, it was found that Alameda was responsible for minting a massive $39.55 billion of USDT. This figure represents roughly 47% of Tether’s circulating supply as of October 10, 2023. A prior report by Protoss had estimated the minting at around $36.7 billion, however, Grogan managed to update these figures by identifying additional wallets associated with the minting process.

Alameda’s Asset Management and USDT Minting

It was further revealed that the amount of minted USDT exceeded Alameda’s assets under management (AUM) at the pinnacle of the cryptocurrency market. This data was obtained from information submitted by Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) to Forbes for their annual World’s Billionaires publication. The revelation implies a significant role played by Alameda in the USDT market, contributing vastly to the stablecoin’s circulating supply.

Redemptions and Offchain Coordination

The process of accurately determining redemptions remains challenging due to Tether’s offchain coordination of burns. Unlike other platforms, Tether lacks deposit addresses; hence entities send funds directly to the treasury for redemptions. Grogan speculated that assuming all USDT redemptions from FTX were from Alameda, they would have redeemed $3.9 billion USDT, with the majority transpiring over two days in May during an event termed the Luna implosion.

Public Reactions and Further Inquiries

The public’s reaction to these findings was mixed, with some individuals inquiring about the veracity of the corresponding deposits to Tether’s bank account against the minted USDT. Others questioned the methodology employed by Grogan in discovering the additional wallets, to which he responded by citing various sources including public information, court filings, and bankruptcy consolidations wherein the FTX estate was given key control of the Alameda accounts.

Insights from 2021 by Alameda’s Former CEO

In a discourse dating back to 2021, Sam Trabucco, the former CEO and crypto quant trader at Alameda Research, elaborated on USDT’s trading dynamics. Trabucco discussed the volatility of USDT’s premium over other stablecoins like USDC, attributing it to the complex creation and redemption process for USDT. He further explained how adept firms like Alameda could leverage these price deviations to align USDT’s price closer to $1, especially during instances where it diverged from this peg.

The significant quantity of USDT minted by Alameda Research underpins the close relationship between large crypto trading firms and stablecoin operations. Grogan’s findings provide a glimpse into the intricate dynamics of USDT’s minting and redemption processes, illuminating the mechanisms that assist in maintaining the stablecoin’s peg to the US dollar.

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Quidd Launches New Platform Mintables, Enabling Users to Mint Digital Collectibles into NFTs

Animoca Brands and its digital collectables market subsidiary Quidd announced on Tuesday that it has launched Mintables, a feature that enables users to mint and un-mint digital collectables into NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain.

In a statement, Animoca said that Mintables will make minting of NFTs easier and cheaper for beginners and remove the need for cryptocurrency to do so, while the assets remain interoperable with major Ethereum NFT marketplaces such as OpenSea and Rarible.

Mintables solves several challenges facing the NFT industry. First, minting NFTs has been a difficult and expensive thing for many crypto novices. Therefore, with the launch of With Mintables, Quidd will significantly reduce the cost, time, and complexity for mainstream users to make their first mint. In this case, such crypto novices will only need a self-custody wallet like MetaMask to make their minting, no cryptocurrency is required.

Seasoned NFT users also face difficulty because officially licensed branded NFTs are normally locked down in centralized applications and custodial wallets. Mintables, therefore, provides seasoned NFT enthusiasts with off-the-shelf interoperability with major Ethereum NFT marketplaces, such as OpenSea and Rarible.

Besides that, Mintables enables users to remint and unmint digital collectables on new blockchains, depending on a user’s discretion. This marketplace provides unique portability that enables NFT owners to bring their NFTs to major blockchain platforms whenever they want.

Michael Bramlage, CEO and co-founder of Quidd, talked about the development: “With Mintables, we are delivering user choice in addition to true digital ownership. Why should the platform decide if a digital item should be on a blockchain, or even which blockchain? The Mintables initiative gives real power to the collectors.”

With the launch, officially licensed Atari digital collectables on Quidd are now available for minting and unminting on the Ethereum blockchain for as little as $3 per mint.  Quidd said it plans to open up more collections for minting, and will add support for more blockchains such as WAX, Flow, and Binance Smart Chain.

Mintables provides other benefits for over 7,000,000 collectors on Quidd. The firm elaborated: “Minting preserves an item’s metadata and the collector’s ownership of the item inside Quidd. Minting does not affect any ranks or status in the Quidd community, and the Quidd app aggregates both digital collectables and NFTs in a single collection interface.”

Acquired by Animoca Brands in 2019, Quidd deals with the virtual collecting and trading of collectables by major brands such as football teams like Manchester United shows like Ricky and Morty, and others.

Social Media Firm Adding NFT Features

NFTs have emerged to become a leader in the digital revolution. A good number of NFT platforms such as Axie Infinity, Nifty Gateway, Binance, OpenSea, Solanart, Stashh, Decentraland, Rarible, and others, have come to provide NFTs services to users. Even Social media networks like Meta Inc., and Twitter, among others are jumping on the NFT bandwagon.

The social media craze began when the ‘Twitter Blue’ account users were allowed to put NFTs as profile pictures. A few months later, Meta launched 3D Avatars for Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram and enabled users in Mexico, Canada, and the US to beam their virtual selves across apps via feed posts, stickers, and profile pictures. YouTube also recently started the distribution of personalized NFTs to the influencers on the platform. Reddit also has rolled out a first test for changing profile pictures with an NFT.

The global NFT market size reached $340 million in 2020 and is projected to hit $3,50,000 million in 2030. As more and more firms, artists, producers, and users connect with it, the growth of the NFT industry rises.

Image source: Shutterstock


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CyberKongz’ mass monkey minting burns $4M in Ether in 5 hours

The latest craze in animal themed nonfungible tokens has been such a big hit that it has become the top burner of Ethereum transaction fees over the past 24 hours.

CyberKongz, which started as a collection of 1,000 unique NFTs in early March 2021, has surged in popularity recently. So much so that it has today usurped NFT marketplace OpenSea and the world’s most popular decentralized exchange, Uniswap, in terms of Ethereum fee burning.

The achievement was noted by the Chinese blockchain outlet Wu Blockchain which reported that it had burned 1,240 in ETH, or around $4 million in just 5 hours.

The mass monkey minting has caused gas prices to skyrocket with average transactions reaching their highest level since late May at around $25. Etherscan’s gas tracker is reporting higher prices of over $40 for more complex operations such as smart contract interactions.

At the time of writing, the ETH fee burning tracker was reporting that CyberKongz VX had been responsible for the burning of 1,430 ETH, or $4.7 million, over the past 24 hours. It was still ahead of both OpenSea and Uniswap — in fact it burnt more than both of them combined.

According to OpenSea, there are now 3,000 NFTs in the ape-themed collection with more than 600 owners and a floor price of 1.27 ETH — approximately $4,150. The most expensive one, the first in the collection, was being offered for a whopping 10,000 ETH, or $33 million.

According to the official website for the NFT collection, the 34×34 pixel CyberKongz images achieved great popularity due to their suitability as profile pictures on Discord and social media. A BANANA token has also been created, giving genesis CyberKongz the ability to passively generate 10 tokens per day for the next ten years.

Related: Are NFTs being used for money laundering? Yes, they are, claims Mr. Whale

A minting event which went live around 8 hours ago on Sunday, Aug. 15 at 19:00 UTC. Up to ten thousand CyberKong NFTs are available to mint including 3D ones that can be used in the metaverse.

OpenSea, where the newly minted CyberKongz are now selling on the secondary market, is responsible for nearly 16% of all gas used on the network. It has generated $2.7 million in fees over the past 24 hours.


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Algomint, Algorand’s Digital Asset Minter, Set To Arrive Q3 2021

In a press release this week, the team at Algorand has announced that Algomint, the “golden bridge to the Algorand DeFi ecosystem”, is coming to market in Q3 2021. The platform will bring liquidity and unlock further DeFi potential in the Algorand network.


The Algomint platform will allow users to engage in investing, trading, sending and receiving, borrowing and lending, staking, and yield fielding with 46,000 transactions per second and $0.001 fee per transaction.

Algomint will allow users to trade bitcoin in the Algorand DeFi marketplace by having them mint goBTC on the platform, while locking the original bitcoin on a 1:1 ratio in a secured 3rd party custody vault. Users will burn goBTC by the same ratio when they go to withdrawal bitcoin from the network. Algomint will utilize this same functionality for other cryptocurrency assets, such as ETH and USDT. With a Q3 product launch, the platform will initially offer goBTC and goETH as the first core assets to serve the ecosystem. Algomint will also look to engage with users through a governance token, goMNT, which is expected to also launch in Q3 2021. In the following quarter, the team anticipates launch goUSD while introducing programmable liquidity by way of the team’s Balancer Decentralized Exchange.

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Related Reading | pNetwork And Algorand Launch Partnership To Create Cross-Chain Connections

The Team

The Algomint team is led by Meld Gold founders Michael Cotton and AJ Milne. Meld Gold leverages Algorand’s protocol to add efficiency and accessibility in the gold supply chain.

Algorand’s team sees the clear potential around the explosion of DeFi and applicable use case with Algorand’s protocol. The press release cites annual DeFi growth at a 7,500% rate, despite Ethereum’s challenges around speed and transaction costs. The release also notes that only 1% of the Wall Street capital inflow this year is being applied in the DeFi network, alluding to substantial potential in the marketplace.

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What’s Being Said

In the press release, Algorand COO Sean Ford stated that Algomint will be “providing a necessary bridge for digital assets to enter the growing Algorand ecosystem” and that he is excited for the corresponding opportunities for users to engage on the platform. “Tools like Algomint serve as foundational components for the incredible expansion of DeFi on Algorand that we are currently seeing”, he added.

And partners echoed that sentiment. CFA and Chief Investment Officer of Apollo Capital Henrik Andersson added to release that Algomint would be “essentially opening the Algorand network to the rapid growth we are seeing elsewhere in the DeFi markets”. Andersson saw the value proposition as especially valuable, emphasizing that “having the ability to take advantage of transaction speeds of 4 seconds and costs of less than $0.001” would provide the market “a very different proposition”.

Related Reading | OKEx Announces Support For USDT And USDC Stablecoins On The Algorand Blockchain

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