On the same day that New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) approved the Winklevoss twins' Gemini dollar as a regulated stablecoin, NYDFS approved Paxos Standard's PAX coin (CRYPTO: PAX) as stablecoin and tokenized dollar. Paxos Standard is a New York-based blockchain-powered trust that offers settlement services.
On Monday, the company announced that PAX will be collateralized 1:1 with the U.S. dollar, making it a digital representation of Uncle Sam's greenback. Every Paxos coin is fully backed by dollars held at U.S.-based FDIC-insured banks and transactions occur on the Ethereum network. High net worth individuals or institutions that need to move some serious money can set up accounts for purchases of over $100,000. PAX is audited by a major accounting firm.
The Dollar Goes Digital
"We believe we’re bringing an unparalleled level of trust and protection to the world of digital assets," CEO Chad Cascarillo wrote in Sept. 10 announcement. "If you take the concept of crypto assets but ensure its always issued and redeemed 1:1 for dollars, you finally have a crypto asset that has payment utility, not just speculative store of value." To date, Paxos has raised $93 million to grow and scale operations. "We believe that Paxos Standard will help us to solve a much bigger problem we’re tackling: mobilizing assets anywhere, anytime."
Cascarillo outlined the limitations of legacy financial systems where deals and payments can take days or weeks to settle, inconveniencing counterparties and raising costs. "The demise of any one financial institution affects the system at large because there is no way to resolve all the outstanding, pending positions and unravel the broken ownership chain. The system is constantly under settlement risk, and this only became painfully apparent as the key exacerbating factor for why the crisis [from a decade ago] nearly death spiraled."
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Too-Big-To-Fail And Inefficiencies
In the past, such a dynamic has been addressed by more legislation and regulation, but their effects have included the creation of immense, centralized institutions that have huge capital requirements — inefficient, too-big-to-fail banks. Cascarillo said decentralization, blockchain tech and innovation are better ways to remove settlement risk, implying that government should get out of the way so the private sector can improve practices.
People can now use PAX through "itBit and other exchanges where PAX will be available for traders to move digital assets into PAX while hedging against volatility." Additionally, they can use the stablecoin through trading desks to settle the cash side of any crypto trades instantaneously and 24/7.
Cascarillo said there are future useful applications of PAX beyond digitizing national currencies.
"Right now, it's most useful in trading against digital assets. But eventually, it could be used to settle transactions with any assets, not just assets that are digitally native, but assets that are physical (commodities) or securities (stocks and bonds)," said Paxos' CEO. "It could also be used in commerce, fulfilling the original hope for bitcoin. It could finally level economic opportunities for people around the world, reducing dependencies on volatile, native currencies and enabling cross-border payments. This could profoundly change the financial system and, very importantly, access to it."
Earlier this year, U.S. regulators approved TrustToken's TrueUSD as stablecoin. TrueUSD is also U.S. dollar-pegged and has more than $80 million in deposits. It's traded on more than 30 exchanges around the world such as Binance, Bittrex, Huobi, a spokesman told CryptoDaily.
"This summer TrustToken raised $20 million from Andreessen-Horowitz’s new crypto fund to fuel their mission of bringing real-life assets like real estate, cars, art, and commodities onto the blockchain."
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Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article belong solely to the author. Information contained herein should not be construed as investment advice.