Best USDC Interest Rates

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Contributor, Benzinga
May 22, 2022

Looking for the best interest rates on USDC? Gemini offers competitive rates on USDC and USDT!

Stablecoins are digital currencies that are designed to maintain a fixed value, typically pegged to a fiat currency like the US dollar. These coins use various methods to maintain their pegs, such as algorithmic rebalancing portfolios or centralized debt issuance. While each stablecoin has its own set of advantages and risks, all of them offer interest rates that are significantly higher than those offered by traditional fiat currencies.

The high demand for borrowing in crypto markets is largely driven by the volatility of digital currencies. However, it's important to note that stablecoin lending is not without its risks. Before venturing into stablecoin lending, it's essential to conduct thorough research and understand the unique risks associated with each stablecoin and lending platform.

Disclosure: ²Sum of median estimated savings and rewards earned, per user in 2021 across multiple Coinbase programs (excluding sweepstakes). This amount includes fee waivers from Coinbase One (excluding the subscription cost), rewards from Coinbase Card, and staking rewards. ³Crypto rewards is an optional Coinbase offer. Upon purchase of USDC, you will be automatically opted in to rewards. If you’d like to opt out or learn more about rewards, you can click here. The rewards rate is subject to change and can vary by region. Customers will be able to see the latest applicable rates directly within their accounts

Best Interest Rates on USDC

Staking your crypto to earn interest can be an exciting way to take advantage of the cryptocurrency market. And if you're looking for a safe way to dip your toes into the world of staking, USD Coin (USDC) is an excellent option. Here are few options to consider

Nexo: 12% APR

Nexo is another great option, offering an even higher interest rate of up to 12%. There are no minimums, and payouts are made daily. Nexo also offers the option to be paid in NEXO coin, giving you an extra 2% for choosing to do so. However, to receive higher interest rates, you must stake at least 10% of your account in NEXO coin, and the minimum deposit requirement is $10. Nexo offers up to $375 million in insurance, so your investment is more secure than at other exchanges. Nexo offers some of the highest rates on the market with a smooth and user-friendly interface.

What's more, Nexo currently has a special promotion that gives new users free cryptocurrency for signing up. The bonus starts at $10 in free crypto for users that deposit over $100, $20 for $200, $50 for $500 and a $100 bonus for users that deposit $1,000 or more.

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Crypto.com: Up to 4.5% APR

Crypto.com offers rates of up to 4.5% on USDC. However, there is a 1-month minimum deposit term. During this time, you will be unable to sell your USDC. Your interest rate also depends on the amount of your deposit. To receive the 4.5% interest, you must deposit a minimum of $40,000.

Earn Stablecoin Interest Directly from Your Wallet

While custodial options for USDC lending are more simple, you must trust 3rd parties to safely hold your funds. If 2022 taught us anything, 3rd parties in crypto are not to be trusted. With the downfall of FTX and other exchanges, investors are turning to decentralized alternatives for earning interest while holding their assets themselves.

The most simple way to earn interest on USDC, DAI, and USDT is through Origin Dollar (OUSD). By swapping your stablecoins for OUSD, Origin Protocol is able to earn holders interest through low-risk, market neutral DeFi strategies. This all happens through code passively, so all you need to do is hold the token in your wallet.

What Are Stablecoins?

Stablecoins are tokens pegged to an external asset, such as gold or the U.S. dollar, which ensures price stability. These coins are usually backed by the external asset, commonly USD, minimizing risk. Nonetheless, some stablecoins are collateralized by other cryptocurrencies, which elevates the risk factor. Stablecoins are generally less volatile. For instance, USDC remains fixed at $1 and is supported by numerous financial institutions. In a highly unstable market, stablecoins offer stability by being collateralized.

Earn Interest Directly From Your Wallet

If you aren't looking to manually manage your yields with USDC, DAI, or USDT, then OUSD may be a good alternative for you. OUSD earns interest directly from users' wallets, so there's no need to manage stablecoins between yield farming protocols like Aave, Curve, Compound, and Convex. Every day, OUSD rebases to reflect the interest earned through these protocols.

How Cryptocurrency Interest Works

Cryptocurrency interest works similarly to an interest-earning savings account. You give your funds to an exchange, and they use those funds, giving you rewards along the way. This process is known as staking. 

However, there are several nuances to crypto interest. Most interest rates are floating, meaning they can change at any moment. For most stablecoins, however, offer interest rates between 4% to 12%, so the fluctuation is not overly dramatic. These interest rates are derived from the supply and demand of the underlying asset. They are paid in crypto, usually in a compounding manner. This means the interest earned is deposited back into the interest pool. Some coins have a lock-up period, meaning you cannot sell your assets for a period of time. 

Risks of Stablecoin Interest Rates

While stablecoin interest rates remain within a range, they can always fluctuate. This can change the amount of interest you earn. Crypto interest rates also have much less regulation than typical banks. The exchanges are not required to offer insurance. Also, since you earn interest on a centralized exchange, there is a risk of being hacked. 

With no insurance requirements, a hack could permanently destroy your investment, leaving you with nothing. While there are currently very little regulations, governments could step in at any point and attempt to regulate the industry. This means you may no longer be able to earn interest on assets. While stablecoins offer high interest rates thousands of times higher than typical interest rates, it is not entry risk-free.

Cryptocurrency Interest vs. Stablecoins

Cryptocurrency interest differs from that of stablecoin interest. Because cryptocurrencies are much more volatile, exchanges are less willing to loan them out. A cryptocurrency could lose 50% of its value in 1 day, but stable coins hardly move. Because of the increased volatility on cryptocurrencies, exchanges offer stakers lower interest rates on cryptocurrency. This being said, the same applies to the upside; if the cryptocurrency you hold increases, your portfolio will increase, as well as the interest you’ve earned.

Stable coins do not fluctuate much, and are a much safer way to store value in crypto. Exchanges are willing to offer users much higher interest rates on stablecoins. For instance, most interest rates on a cryptocurrency, like Ethereum, hover around 5% to 8%. However, stablecoins, such as USDC, can easily offer interest rates surpassing 12%. Stablecoins are a safer option, so exchanges are able to offer higher interest rates. 

Is Earning Interest on USDC Worth It?

Earning interest on USDC can be a great option to begin earning interest on crypto assets. Interest rates are much higher than those of typical saving accounts, giving investors much higher returns. However, risks of hacking and insurance pose a threat to your investment, so it is not entirely secure. If you can tolerate the risks and are looking to begin earning interest on crypto assets, stablecoins like USDC are a great option.

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About Caden Pok

Caden has been involved with cryptocurrency for several years. He began trading and investing in crypto in 2018. Now, we mines multiple coins and holds positions in Cardano and Ethereum. He is very experienced with DeFi technology.