DeFi Daily

✊🏼 Ethereum Completes Goerli Testnet Merge

Hello Defiers! Here’s what we’re covering today: News Ethereum Completes Goerli Testnet Merge Degens Tweak Feds to Protest Tornado Cash Ban Inside Solana’s ‘Textbook’ Response to Exploit Markets Goerli and Cooling Inflation Drive Ether to Two-Month High

Hello Defiers! Here’s what we’re covering today:

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The Merge

✊🏼 Ethereum Completes Goerli Testnet Merge

Ethereum’s Final Testnet Has Transitioned To Proof-Of-Stake

By Owen Fernau

COMPLETE The final installment of the testnet Merge trilogy is complete. On Aug. 10 at 945pm ET, Ethereum’s Goerli testnet transitioned to Proof-of-Stake consensus. 

CONSENSUS This means the consensus layer, which has so far been running a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism parallel to Goerli, has merged into Goerli’s execution layer, unifying the two systems.

CELEBRATE The Ethereum community celebrated the milestone on a community call co-hosted by Bankless and EthStaker. 


Tornado Fallout

😏 Degens Tweak Feds to Protest Tornado Cash Ban

Emotions Run High as Crypto Responds to Opening of ‘Pandora’s Box’

By Jason Levin and Claire Gu

WHIRLWIND There’s been no letup in the whirlwind unleashed by the U.S. Treasury’s sanction of Tornado Cash. One of the more eye-opening responses involved degens testing the government’s security monitors by continuing to pump transactions through the sanctioned protocol. 

BAFFLED BOT On Tuesday, 1,787 ETH, or almost $3M, was sent through Tornado Cash with 166 of those transactions being for 0.1 ETH, according to TornadoBot, a Twitter bot tracking Tornado Cash. The day before, the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) had barred American citizens from transactions with Tornado Cash. The act of crypto civil disobedience caught the attention of many who were at once baffled and disturbed by the U.S. government’s crackdown on crypto privacy.

PROFANE “Maybe the strategy is confrontation of the absurdity, to force everyone to violate OFAC including entities that have a hand in writing OFAC to show how profane the policy is,” Joseph Delong, the CTO of NFT lending protocol Astoria, told The Defiant. “The government doesn’t think, they just react on the collective impulse.”


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Crisis Management

☀️ Inside Solana’s ‘Textbook’ Response to Exploit

Crisis Management Becomes a Key Exercise as Crypto Exploits Mount

By Aleksandar Gilbert

DINNER On the night of Aug. 7, Austin Federa was at dinner with friends when notifications started pouring in through the Slack messaging app. “I was like ‘Oh, no – I have to go,’” Federa, the Solana Foundation’s communications chief recalled in a recent interview. 

WALLETS DRAINED News of the second major crypto hack in two days had just broken, and Federa was on the front lines. Exactly 24 hours after the $200M Nomad protocol was stripped bare in a “crowd-looting”, thousands of people – the vast majority of them Solana users – had their wallets drained in a hack that sparked panic across the entire crypto industry. Solana, a he No. 9 cryptocurrency with a market cap of $15.6B, is leading a new generation of high-speed blockchains challenging Ethereum.

FOUR ATTACKERS As word spread and users took measures to protect their assets, the pilfering ground to a halt. Experts believe there were four attackers, who exploited a vulnerability in Slope Finance’s crypto wallets and made off with an estimated $4M, pocket change by industry standards.

THEORIES Nevertheless, fear that Solana or its network of partners had been compromised — theories that were quickly debunked — spurred Federa and his counterparts into an episode of crisis management. 


Market Action

📈 Goerli and Cooling Inflation Drive Ether to Two-Month High

Completion of Final Merge Test Helps Drive ETH Rally

By Samuel Haig

NEWS Crypto markets have reversed earlier losses and are rallying after softer than expected Consumer Price Index (CPI) data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

8.7% Inflation in the U.S. dropped to 8.5% in July, according to the Aug. 10 report. Economists polled by Reuters had predicted a reading of 8.7% — a reduction from last month’s 9.1%, but a far cry from the Fed’s target of just 2%. Ether surged 8.9% to $1,850, the highest level since June 9. Bitcoin is up 3.7% to 24,000.

STALWARTS DeFi stalwarts UNI and AAVE are up more than 13% in the past 24 hours. The ETH/BTC ratio stands at 0.0769, a three-month high, as investors continue to favour the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization ahead of the Merge, Ethereum’s transition to an eco-friendly proof-of-stake consensus mechanism. 


The Merge

👀 Exchanges Welcome Ethereum PoW Die-Hards

BitMEX Readies ETHPoW Futures Contract for Anti-Merge Investors

By Claire Gu

PUMPED The DeFi community is pumped. Ethereum just completed its dress rehearsal before The Merge  — the Goerli testnet passed on Wednesday — and ETH has soared 72% in the last 30 days. 

DIE-HARDS Even so, die-hards devoted to pre-Merge Ethereum are preparing to carry on trading tokens tied to the Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism the network has employed since its founding seven years ago. 

PoW FORK Last week, the crypto exchanges Poloniex and MEXC Global said they would continue to support the trading of tokens tied to a PoW fork of Ethereum. BitMEX, the crypto derivatives platform co-founded by Arthur Hayes, launched a futures contract called ETHPoW on Tuesday.


DeFi Explainers

👨🏻‍🏫 What Is Polygon?

A Step-by-Step Guide to One of DeFi Most Popular Blockchains

By Rahul Nambiampurath

TRAFFIC Running a decentralized blockchain network, where each transaction has to be verified across thousands of nodes, demands massive computing resources. This becomes especially problematic when the network has to deal with high traffic. On Ethereum, these traffic spikes have resulted in exorbitant ETH gas fees.

AFFORDABLE To make Ethereum affordable, the Polygon project gained traction. Polygon is what’s known as a Layer 2 blockchain, meaning it seeks to improve on Ethereum’s structure and performance. 

LAUNCHED Polygon and its native token, MATIC, have become so popular that its total value locked (TVL) is keeping pace with other blockchains such as Solana. Let’s dive deeper into how Polygon works. Polygon was launched in 2017. There are four key figures involved with its creation.



🔗 Goerli Merge LIVESTREAM | Bankless, ETH Stakers, and Friends!: Bankless

Discussion of Latest Development in The Merge.

🔗 As CryptoPunks NFT Owners Get Commercial Rights, Yuga Hopes to Secure Their ‘Legacy as Artwork’: Decrypt

Noah Davis, who joined from auction house Christie’s, tells Decrypt about Yuga Labs’ plans for the influential Ethereum NFT project.

🔗 Coinbase Exchange Faces SEC Probe Over Crypto Yield, Staking Products: CoinDesk

Publicly traded crypto exchange Coinbase Global (COIN) is under investigation by U.S. securities regulators over its token listing processes as well as its staking programs and yield-generating products, the company disclosed in its most recent quarterly report.

Trending in The Defiant
  • MakerDAO May Execute ‘Emergency Shutdown’ If Sanctions Hit DAI Now it’s MakerDAO’s turn. The DeFi blue chip is the latest protocol to be struck by shock waves from the U.S. Treasury Department’s decision Monday to sanction Tornado Cash, a so-called “mixer” that lets crypto users anonymize their transactions. 

  • Centre Bans USDC Addresses After Tornado Sanctions Stablecoins are in the spotlight yet again. Centre, the consortium behind USDC, the world’s second-largest stablecoin, banned 38 addresses on Aug. 8. This means that the USDC tokens in those addresses are frozen and cannot be moved. 81 addresses have been banned in total.

  • Harmony Validators Decry Litany of Problems Last week, after near-universal condemnation, leaders of the Harmony blockchain scrapped their proposal to reimburse community members who lost money in a $100M hack in June.

🧑‍💻 ✍️ 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.

The Defiant is a daily newsletter focusing on decentralized finance, a new financial system that’s beinglt 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, while free signups get only part of the content.Click here to pay with DAI (for $100/yr) or sub with fiat by clicking on the button above ($15/mo, $150/yr.