Michael J. Casey is CoinDesk's Chief Content Officer.

Amid the weakness in bitcoin and other crypto assets during the latter part of 2021 and early 2022, there’s been an anomalous counter-performance by the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector. The last few weeks have seen a modest rebound in total value locked, a measure of how much digital asset value has been collateralized for loans in the DeFi system. CoinDesk’s Shuai Hao whipped me up this chart, based on data from DeFi Pulse, which shows TVL, as expressed in ether, versus the value of the CoinDesk Indices' DeFi (DFX) index.

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(Shuai Hao/CoinDesk)

It’s too early to say whether the rebound in TVL will meaningfully reverse the declines in DeFi commitments seen since last spring. However, it’s notable the value has increased despite close to no rebound in dollar prices. We will have to see whether the sector can return to the unbridled enthusiasm of a year ago, or whether the zeitgeist has been lost to NFTs.

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Michael J. Casey is CoinDesk's Chief Content Officer.