Trade-offs in the Decentralized BitMEX Space

By Tushar Jain

| 20 minute read

One of the greatest innovations of modern financial markets is that traders can gain financial exposure to an asset without having to physically settle that asset—aka synthetic exposure. This dramatically expands the universe of traders who can trade in a given market, especially for harder to deliver assets. This is desirable because increasing traders and capital in a given market can help reduce volatility and increase liquidity.

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Trade-offs in the Decentralized BitMEX Space

One of the greatest innovations of modern financial markets is that traders can gain financial exposure to an asset without having to physically settle that asset—aka synthetic exposure. This dramatically expands the universe of traders who can trade in a given market, especially for harder to deliver assets. This is desirable because increasing traders and capital in a given market can help reduce volatility and increase liquidity.

Exploring The Design Space of Liquidity Mining

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) has recently seen an explosion of activity and public interest. The primary driving factor has been the discovery of “liquidity mining” as a mechanism to bootstrap liquidity. Broadly defined, liquidity mining occurs when users of a DeFi protocol are compensated in that protocol’s native token for interacting with the protocol.

Open Audio

The first Internet-enabled application I can remember enjoying was Napster. It was 1999, and I was downloading songs at a blazing fast 2.96 KB / second. On good days, it would tick up to 3.13 KB / second. Music has been—by far—the most censored content on the Western internet over the last 20 years. The waves of censorship have played out time and time again across venues.

Huobi Token ($HT) Analysis and Valuation

Exchange tokens are currently the most interesting sector in crypto because they sit at the intersection of where there is demand today and where there will be opportunities tomorrow. We have previously expressed a [thesis](https://multicoin.capital/2019/10/29/exchanges-are-open-finance/ "Exchanges are Open Finance") that exchange tokens are the best way to get exposure to open finance and that there is tremendous growth potential.

DeFi's Invisible Asymptotes

With the growth of the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem over the last 24 months, I’ve been thinking about protocol-level defensibility and market size. I wrote about the former recently. This essay focuses on the latter. My biggest concern for Ethereum’s current DeFi economy is that it is subject to one or possibly a few invisible asymptotes, as I’ll explain below.

Lightning 2020: A Toolkit for Heretical Web3 Developers

Many developers and investors interested in building Web3 gave up on building on top of Bitcoin years ago, assuming that its limited throughput, high latency, and conservative programmability made such development impossible. Indeed, this is precisely what led to the birth of Ethereum, and a plethora of Web3 platforms (e.g. Arweave, Cosmos, Polkadot, Solana, Near) that developers are leveraging today.

On Forking DeFi Protocols

As a suite of new layer 1 blockchains are launching, I’ve been thinking about Ethereum’s network effects, and the defensibility of the DeFi protocols built on top of Ethereum. A couple of years ago, I wrote about the network effects of non-sovereign layer 1 monies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Our Investment in dForce: The DeFi Super-Network

Today I’m excited to announce that Multicoin Capital led a $1.5M round in dForce, the world’s first unified network for open finance protocols. Coinvestors include our friends at China Merchant Bank International (CMBI) and Huobi Capital.

Trust Spectrum

Most people talk about financial services in crypto—trading, saving, lending, etc.—as either “decentralized” or “centralized.” Crypto advocates tend to characterize the former as less risky because users don’t have to trust a counterparty to custody their assets, removing the risks of losing their funds through a hack, impropriety, seizure from governments, and other forms of human error or malice.

March 12: The Day Crypto Market Structure Broke (Part 2)

Note: A few days ago I published a postmortem detailing how the crypto market structure broke on March 12. This post, Part 2, will explore the potential solutions to some of the systemic problems outlined in Part 1. To recap, one of the core structural problems is that current blockchains—both Bitcoin and Ethereum—simply do not support enough transaction throughput to facilitate global trading across many venues in volatile environments.