Stablecoin issuer Tether Holdings Limited has unwound its exposure to commercial paper, addressing a long-standing item of contention among detractors who’ve criticized the quality of its reserves.
In addition to removing commercial paper from its reserves, Tether announced on Oct. 13 that it had replaced those investments with United States Treasury Bills. “Reducing commercial papers to zero demonstrates Tether’s commitment to backing its tokens with the most secure reserves in the market,” the company said.
While Tether has long been subjected to public scrutiny about its reserves, detractors have recently focused on the composition of its assets. Namely, in October 2021 Bloomberg speculated that Tether may have oversized exposure to Chinese commercial paper at a time when one of the country’s largest property developers, China Evergrande Group, was on the verge of collapse.
Commercial paper is a short-term, unsecured debt obligation issued by a corporation or financial institution that typically carries a higher credit risk.
In June, Tether denounced claims that 85% of its commercial paper portfolio was backed by Chinese or Asian commercial paper. At the time, the company clarified it would eventually reduce its commercial paper exposure to zero. In the following months, Tether issued periodic updates showing a sharp reduction in its commercial paper reserves.
In August, Tether hired BDO Italia, a member of BDO Global’s accounting organization, to begin conducting regular reviews and attestations of its dollar reserves. The stablecoin issuer said it planned to increase its reporting frequency from quarterly to monthly.