🌡 Celsius Defies Fear of Implosion as Token Soars 218%
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By Owen Fernau
HIGHER After crypto lending platform Celsius suspended withdrawals of deposits last week, it seemed unlikely that its native token would move higher. Yet the crypto bank’s CEL token has soared 218% since June 13. What gives? A short squeeze, that’s what.
SQUEEZE It appears that investors have joined forces and started buying the token to put pressure on short sellers who were profiting from Celsius’ troubles. The move brings to mind the squeeze meme stonks fans exerted on hedge funds who’d sold short GameStop back in early 2021. The hashtag “#CelShortSqueeze” has gained momentum on Twitter.
BANK RUN According to the developing narrative, investors have targeted the CEL shorts as the same actors who triggered the bank run that caused Celsius to freeze withdrawals.
The Acquisition Amount was Not Disclosed
By Jason Levin
NEWS Uniswap Labs is planning to integrate NFTs into the largest decentralized exchange via the acquisition of Genie, an NFT marketplace aggregator, according to a post on the company’s website.
DEAL Genie, founded in 2021, allows users to buy NFTs from across different marketplaces in a single purchase. This acquisition comes less than two months after NFT marketplace OpenSea purchased Genie competitor Gem.
30 DAYS Genie had 18,061 transactions and 8,050 ETH ($14.2M) traded in the last 30 days, according to Dune Analytics. This compares with Uniswap V3’s trading volume of $129.35B over 483,562 transactions in the same time period, according to DappRadar.
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As a security-first platform, we recently increased our total insurance on custodial assets to $775 million. These additional protections come through our years-long collaborations with BitGo, Ledger Vault, Bakkt, and other industry-renowned custodians via the most prestigious underwriters, including Lloyd’s of London, and Marsh & Arch.
Nexo’s fundamentals are in place to keep your funds safe and to provide you with confidence that regardless of market conditions you can rely on your assets. We urge you to read more about these features and our sustainable practices on our Security page.
By Samuel Haig
STRESS TEST The DeFi primitive of uncollateralized lending is undergoing its first major stress test. On June 17, Babel Finance, a Bitcoin financial services company offering lending and asset management services, suspended redemptions and withdrawals citing “unusual liquidity pressures” amid recent market volatility. On June 21, Maple Finance confirmed that one of its lending pools had previously provided a $10M loan to Babel.
STRUGGLES Babel, which closed an $80M funding round in June, has a valuation of $2B and has raised $120M in equity financing since 2018 from Circle and other backers. Its troubles come at a time of acute stress in the crypto markets as the failure of the Terra ecosystem in May, followed by the struggles of Three Arrows Capital and Celsius, a crypto bank, have been whipping up fears that more disasters are looming.
EMERGENCY On June 20, Babel’s team stated that it had alleviated its liquidity situation after reaching preliminary agreements with major counterparties and customers regarding the repayment of debts. Babel also noted it had “carried out an emergency assessment of the company’s business operations to understand the company’s liquidity status.”
Credit to Be Used 'As Needed'
CREDIT BlockFi, a crypto lending platform, has secured a revolving line of credit of $250M with FTX, the second-largest crypto exchange by trading volume, leaders of both companies said Tuesday.
BALANCES BlockFi CEO Zac Prince said the credit would be used “as needed” and would be “subordinate to all client balances across all account types.” The move was announced only days after Prince took to Twitter to quell rumors the lending platform, with about $15B in assets under management, would go the way of competitor Celsius, which froze withdrawals on its accounts.
TURMOIL Crypto traders have become concerned plummeting digital asset prices and turmoil in multi-billion dollar hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, which have already destabilized firms including Celsius and Babel Finance, could cause other dominoes to fall. Some investors worried BlockFi could be one of them.
By Owen Fernau
TRADE SPEED Synthetix is taking off after a proposal to increase trade speed was approved. Synthetix’s token SNX, fees generated by the protocol and volume are soaring after Synthetix Improvement Proporsal 120 passed, removing a previous buffer between trades of synthetic assets, called Synths and increasing trading speed.
FEES Daily fees have jumped by a multiple of over 19 to $718,500 in the last month, making it the fourth-highest earning blockchain protocol tracked by cryptofees.info. The protocol ranked third in terms of fees on June 19, when SNX stakers earned over $1M.
Synthetix’s token is also soaring. SNX is up 56.5% to $2.92 in the past week.
One of the First DeFi Platforms Takes Fire from DeFi Community
MARKET CONDITIONS Bancor, one of the first DeFi trading platforms, suspended its impermanent loss protection program over the weekend due to “hostile market conditions,” prompting cries that it was decentralized in name only.
POOL Liquidity providers on automated market makers such as Uniswap can suffer so-called impermanent loss (IL) if the value of their deposited tokens rises on the secondary market. In such a scenario, liquidity providers would earn more by simply holding their tokens instead of depositing them in the liquidity pool.
LOSS Since introducing impermanent loss protection in late 2020, Bancor has compensated liquidity providers who suffered impermanent loss with the protocol’s native token, BNT, which they could then sell to recoup their loss.
By Samuel Haig
APPLE Mainstream media outlets just can’t get enough of NFTs. First it was the Associated Press, then The New York Times. Now Time magazine, the 99-year-old publication that once set the agenda for the most powerful people in the world, is taking a bite from the, ahem, apple.
DOUBLE-DOWN The publication has joined forced with The Sandbox, an Ethereum-based metaverse, to create a virtual space inspired by the biggest apple of them all, New York City. “Time double-down on their metaverse play by partnering with The Sandbox is massive news for anyone in the space,” Kieran Warwick, co-founder of metaverse game Illuvium, told The Defiant. “The more mainstream brands we can get transitioning into web3, the quicker we can reach mass adoption.”
LAND The collaboration was unveiled on June 21 as part of the NFT.NYC event. Time’s NFT initiative, TIMEPieces, will launch the space on a virtual land plot in The Sandbox. The project, inevitably, is dubbed TIME Square.
Ethereum NFT project Doodles made a pair of significant announcements at an event hosted alongside the NFT NYC conference tonight, revealing that musician and producer Pharrell Williams will join the project and that it has raised its first round of funding led by venture capital firm Seven Seven Six.
Crypto lending group faces crisis of trust after blocking its 1.7mn customers from making withdrawals.
I have lived as a nomad for the last nine years, taking 360 flights travelling over 1.5 million kilometers (assuming flight paths are straight, ignoring layovers) during that time.
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Uniswap Tops Ethereum in Terms of Daily Fees There’s always a bull market somewhere. Today, that somewhere may be Uniswap, one of DeFi’s most recognizable decentralized exchanges. With $4.3M in fees generated in the past 24 hours, Uniswap has surpassed even its home network, Ethereum, as of June 20. In fact, the decentralized exchange (DEX) has jumped to the top of CryptoFees’ leaderboard.
Lido Proposes ‘Dual-Governance’ Scheme to Quell Ethereum Centralization Fears Wary of “cartelization”, core members of the Lido team have proposed changing the way the liquid staking protocol is governed.
CryptoPunks are done playing second string. That’s the upshot of the news that Yuga Labs, the NFT studio that manages the CryptoPunks collection as well as the blockbuster Bored Ape Yacht Club franchise, has poached Noah Davis from Christie’s as a brand lead for the punks.
🧑💻 ✍️ Stories in The Defiant are written by Owen Fernau, Aleksandar Gilbert, Claire Gu, Samuel Haig, Jason Levin, and yyctrader, and edited by Edward Robinson, yyctrader and Camila Russo. Videos were produced by Robin Schmidt and Alp Gasimov. Podcast was led by Camila, edited by Alp.
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