Nearly $360M in Bitcoin Moved to Ethereum in October Despite DeFi Cool-Off

October’s growth is less than half of September’s 68,000 newly tokenized bitcoins.

AccessTimeIconNov 10, 2020 at 9:45 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 10:29 a.m. UTC
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Ethereum is still the most popular off-chain destination for bitcoins (BTC) as the total supply of tokenized BTC reached 150,000 BTC ($2.05 billion) at the end of October, up 21% since September.

Growth has slowed significantly, however, since the decentralized finance (DeFi) craze that peaked near the end of Q3. Roughly $360 million worth of bitcoins was tokenized in October, significantly less than the $737 million tokenized in September, according to data from Dune Analytics analyzed by CoinDesk.

The primary reason for the slower growth was a steep decline in yield-farming profitability from September’s peak, according to Ryan Watkins, bitcoin analyst at Messari. 

Monthly growth in value of tokenized bitcoin supplies since Jan. 2020
Monthly growth in value of tokenized bitcoin supplies since Jan. 2020

“Both Curve and Uniswap farms were big drivers of growth,” Watkins told CoinDesk. “Both yields have fallen significantly since September’s peak.”

Notably, the pace of tokenization still outpaced the rate of mining issuance for the third consecutive month, although October’s margin was significantly smaller than August's or September's. 26,256 BTC were mined in October, according to Coin Metrics while 26,267 BTC were tokenized during the same period.

Bitcoins mined and tokenized per month since Jan. 2020
Bitcoins mined and tokenized per month since Jan. 2020

Wrapped bitcoin (WBTC), the largest tokenized bitcoin project controlling over 80% of the market, minted nearly 26,000 ERC-20 bitcoin-backed tokens in October. In September, over 56,000 new WBTC were issued. 

Smaller tokenized bitcoin projects also enjoyed significant growth in October, most notably tBTC, re-launched by Thesis in late September, as CoinDesk reported. Within the first month of its relaunch, tBTC’s supply of bitcoin-backed tokens reached a value of over $10 million. Users also minted and burned over 5,000 BTC during the same period. 

To date, the current supply of all tokenized bitcoins is over 152,000 BTC, according to Dune Analytics, worth roughly $2.3 billion and up over 18,000% since January. 

Total growth in tokenized bitcoin supplies since Jan. 2020
Total growth in tokenized bitcoin supplies since Jan. 2020


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