Recap: DeFi Week of Aug. 10 🦄

Hello Defiers, hope you’re having a great weekend!

Summing this past week up: In the last seven days some have started calling DeFi not Decentralized Finance but Degenerate Finance as the levels of speculation is reaching levels not ever seen in this corner of crypto. Yam Finance and its YAM token launched with no tests or audits but with plenty of sweet potato emojis, seemingly custom-designed to capitalize on the recent hype for DeFi tokens. The project drew $400M overnight but ended the next day after the team found a bug on its code. The team is now preparing to launch YAM V2. Other meme tokens like BASED also popped up, while yearn.finance’s YFI soared above $6k after Binance listed the token. As frenzy around these new tokens reached a fever pitch, yield farmers were impatiently waiting for Curve Finance’s CRV to launch. The stablecoin-focused DEX has been at the center of the yield farming frenzy, so its token has been highly anticipated — so much so, that someone found the code on GitHub and decided to launch it themselves. The Curve team decided to just go with it.

All this activity continues to push Ethereum gas costs to records, and gas tokens are soaring in line. Assets in DeFi keep climbing, which is driving Nexus Mutual cover to records. 1inch launched Mooniswap AMM, and announced a $2.8M funding round. Aave announced its V2 upgrade. This week’s podcast and interview is with Alex Masmej, who is spearheading the personal token movement.

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Interview

"The Trick With Personal Tokens is People Want me to be Popular, Not Necessarily Succesful:" Alex Masmej

Alex Masmej is the first person to raise money by selling tokens not linked to any project, but linked to himself, in a sort of self-IPO. Much like shareholders taking dividends, Alex token holders can have a share of the entrepreneur’s future earnings. The money raised has helped him cover living expenses as he plans to move from Paris to San Francisco and start a tech company. He’s willing to try almost anything and see what sticks. In one of his experiments, he let ALEX holders vote on his daily habits, which is how he came to run 5km almost daily. Most recently, he announced token rewards in exchange for holders to add liquidity to exchanges where Alex is traded. We talk about how to better align token holders' incentives with his own, what mainstream personal tokens may look like, and the Black Mirrorish quality of it all.

🎙Listen to the interview in this week’s podcast episode here:


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See all the latest updates and speakers at https://smartcontractsummit.io


Thursday

Dives

  • YAMpocalypse: How Extreme Hubris and Speculation Smashed the Latest DeFi Token: Yam Finance TVL went from $0 to as high as $500M, now to $280. YAM token jumped over $150 and is now trading at just below $1. The team discovered a bug in the code, which the community organized to fix, but ultimately made governance impossible.

Bytes

Wednesday

Dives

  • YAM: The Emoji That Drew $400M in Less Than a Day: No one knew Yam Finance before yesterday at 5pm UTC when the team tweeted their first and only Medium article explaining the “project” they launched two hours later.

  • DeFi Tokens & the Binance Effect: BAL transactions of over $100k surged by 40x and hit a record on the same day it got listed in Binance, while YFI addresses with a balance is approaching 5,000, growing by over 10% on the say it got listed on the world’s largest exchange.

Tuesday

Dives

  • Here’s Everything You Need to Know About CRV Listing: Curve is gearing up to distribute its own CRV governance token this week ––possibly as soon as today–– and yield farmers just can’t wait.

  • Assets in DeFi Insurer Nexus Mutual Soar by 4X to Record: Nexus Mutual’s active coverage plans and ETH capital pool are soaring to record highs. Demand for protection against smart contract failure is growing as total value locked (TVL) in DeFi soared by almost 80% in the last month to a record of +$4.6B.

Bytes

  • 1inch Raises $2.8M in Funding Round Led By Binance: 1inch raised $2.8M on its first funding round, which was led by Binance Labs. The raise comes after the DEX aggregator surpassed $1B in overall trading volume.

  • 1inch Launches AMM Mooniswap: Arbitrageurs have been eating liquidity providers’ lunch. Now, 1inch says they can all get a piece of the pie.

  • APY.Finance Wants to Democratize Yield Farming: As gas prices continue to skyrocket, the average yield farmer is getting boxed out. APY.finance aims to change that.

  • Valueless Token Now Worth $6,000 after Binance Launch: Yearn.finance’s YFI token soared by 45% to over $6,400 after Binance, the largest exchange by trading volume, announced it’s listing the token. 


💜Community Love💜

Thanking all the amazing Defiers for the support and love this week (and always)!


The Defiant is a daily newsletter focusing on decentralized finance, a new financial system that’s being built on top of open blockchains. The space is evolving at breakneck speed and revolutionizing tech and money. Sign up to learn more and keep up on the latest, most interesting developments. Subscribers get full access at $10/month or $100/year, while free signups get only part of the content.

About the founder: I’m Camila Russo, author of The Infinite Machine, the first book on the history of Ethereum. I was previously at Bloomberg News in New York, Madrid and Buenos Aires covering markets. I’ve extensively covered crypto and finance, and now I’m diving into DeFi, the intersection of the two.