In dollar amounts, that figure represents roughly $405 million at the moment—which is less in fiat terms than the previous all-time high of 2.4 million ETH, on account of the market collapsing. Nevertheless, the surge in locked ETH across Ethereum-based DeFi apps marks a significant increase in demand for such services.
After starting 2019 at around 55,000 locked ETH, rising demand for DeFi lending protocols, such as Maker, Compound, and InstaDapp, saw the amount of Ethereum locked in smart contracts reach a high of 2.2 million by mid-April. Over the next 3 months, as the price of Ethereum doubled from $160 to over $320 in July, the number of tokens locked up fell to a low of 1.68 million ETH.
Since then, however, the amount of locked ETH has been on a steady ascent. It hit 2 million at the end of August, 2.3 million by October, and peaked earlier this month at 2.4 million before reaching its latest high of 2.7 million. The vast majority of those funds (74%) are stored in Maker, which currently has 2 million ETH locked up on its platform, according to DeFi Pulse.
The Maker platform is used within Dai, an algorithmic stablecoin pegged to the US dollar. Earlier this week, Maker launched a new multi-collateral version of its stablecoin. Prior to this release, users could only use Ethereum (ETH) tokens to collateralize Dai-based loans. But since the upgrade, users can now use Brave’s Basic Attention (BAT) token, with support on the way for Augur (REP), Golem (GNT), 0x (ZRX), DigixDAO (DGD), and OmiseGo (OMG) tokens.
A distant second in the DeFi rankings is crypto-lending platform Compound, which has around 317,000 ETH locked up on its network. Just last week, Compound completed a $25 million Series A capital raise, led by investment giant Andreessen Horowitz, which is indicative of the interest that DeFi has gained as of late.
A mere 24 months ago, the total USD value of all locked funds on Ethereum DeFi apps was measured in the low millions, according to DeFi Pulse. Now, it’s in the hundreds of millions.