Curve Finance, a fork of the decentralized exchange Uniswap that specifically focuses on efficient stablecoin trading, is fledgling but on the rise, at least if the beta platform’s new all-time high for daily volume, $7.3 million, is any indication.
That Curve has attracted that much activity after only launching in January is noteworthy by itself. But the timing of the stablecoin liquidity pool’s best trading day yet is far from surprising.
The trading spike unfurled on March 9th when the U.S. stock market acutely sank over an oil price war breaking out between Russia and Saudi Arabia and global coronavirus anxieties. The sell-off in equities sparked a de-risking flight across several markets, including in the cryptoeconomy where most assets fell deeply into the red on the day.
Looks like we've just had ATH daily volume: $7.3M!
Always nice when people panic sell dollars for dollars pic.twitter.com/lkANpqHbgA
— Curve Finance (@CurveFinance) March 10, 2020
More than a few crypto traders sought to stem the portfolio bleeding by temporarily seeking refuge in stablecoins, which are designed to maintain their value even in times of volatility, and Curve saw a boon in kind.
A Growing Appettie for Stability
According to Ethereum data platform Dune Analytics, the daily trading volume around Curve’s central stablecoins — Compound’s cDai, iearn’s yDai, Binance USD (BUSD), and Tether (USDT) — reached $7,345,000 on March 9th, a new record for the upstart platform.
iearn.finance’s DeFi yield token, yDai, drove most of that activity, having accounted for more than $5.38 million worth of trades on the day. BUSD was next up with $1.3 million, cDai followed with over $561,000, and Tether brought in $79,000.
Curve’s new daily volume record beats out the platform’s previous ATH, which took place on February 20th when it experienced intraday volume over $5.68 million. Notably, Curve didn’t support BUSD at the time, though the token has recently been driving more traders to the exchange since its addition on February 27th.
Another reason for Curve’s ascending popularity is rising interest in the cryptoeconomy in liquidity provider (LP) opportunities, which Curve amplifies by interacting with other DeFi projects for better gains.
“Behind the scenes, the liquidity pool is also supplied to the Compound protocol or iearn.finance where it generates even more income for liquidity providers,” the project’s landing page notes.
Curve’s 2nd Audit Now Public
On March 10th, Curve’s creators unveiled the results of their second software audit from the Trail of Bits team, and the results were encouraging.
The second audit focused on reviewing fixes Curve’s builders had put in place in response to their first audit, with a Trail of Bits specialist ultimately concluding in a follow-up report that they “correctly fixed the reported issues.”
A series of recommendations aimed at further improving Curve’s codebase were offered, but the audit indicated the platform had a reliable foundation. Still, the decentralized finance sector is generally young and vulnerable, and Curve doesn’t shy away from urging caution among users accordingly.
“As the case with any new, even audited, DeFi project, please don’t supply your life savings, or assets you can’t afford to lose, to Curve, especially as a liquidity provider,” the project’s site warns.
Built on Vyper
Solidity remains the dominant programming language in the Ethereum ecosystem, but Vyper is a rising alternative that holds a lot of promise.
Indeed, an example of that promise in action is Curve Finance, whose smart contracts are written in Vyper. This newer language “allows [writing] new contracts quickly while not sacrificing on safety,” the Curve team has explained.
Yet Vyper is young and would considerably benefit from further development, which is why Curve is currently seeking additional funding through the Gitcoin Grants program in order to help contribute more to Vyper research efforts.
“Currently, Vyper requires some more love than it gets,” the funding request reads.