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DeFi activity on the decline, but investment rolls in: Finance Redefined

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Welcome to Finance Redefined, your weekly dose of essential decentralized finance (DeFi) insights — a newsletter crafted to bring you the most significant developments from the past week.

A new analysis by investment management fund VanEck revealed that economic activity in the DeFi sector dropped 15.5% in August. Blockchain Capital, on the other hand, announced two new crypto-focused funds totaling $580 million.

Balancer protocol blamed its recent exploit on its DNS service provider, claiming that a vulnerability in the code allowed the exploiters to hijack the front end, and Chainlink and Arbitrum have teamed up on decentralized application (DApp) development on Ethereum layer-2 scaling solution Arbitrum.

The top 100 DeFi tokens had a bearish week due to the market decline after the United States Federal Reserve’s interest rate pause, with most tokens trading in the red.

DeFi economic activity drops 15% in August —VanEck

The DeFi ecosystem suffered more setbacks in August as on-chain economic activity dwindled. According to an analysis from investment manager firm VanEck, exchange volume declined to $52.8 billion in August, 15.5% lower than in July.

The findings are based on VanEck’s MarketVector Decentralized Finance Leaders Index, which tracks the performance of the largest and most liquid tokens on DeFi protocols.

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Blockchain Capital closes funds totaling $580 million for investments in crypto gaming, DeFi

Venture capital group Blockchain Capital announced two new funds, totalling $580 million, for investment in infrastructure, gaming, DeFi, and consumer and social technologies.

The funds will operate as Blockchain Capital’s sixth early-stage fund and its first “opportunity fund,” with the latter serving as an inroad to companies that have already secured major funding elsewhere.

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Chainlink hits Ethereum layer-2 Arbitrum for cross-chain DApp development

Blockchain oracle network Chainlink has tapped into Ethereum layer-2 scaling protocol Arbitrum to drive cross-chain DApp development.

The two protocols announced the mainnet launch of the Chainlink Cross-Chain Interoperability Protocol (CCIP) on Arbitrum One on Sept. 21, giving developers access to Chainlink’s solution, which taps into Arbitrum’s high-throughput, low-cost scaling.

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Balancer blames “social engineering attack” on DNS provider for website hijack

The team behind Balancer, an Ethereum-based automated market maker, believes a social engineering attack on its DNS service provider led to its website’s front end being compromised on Sept. 19, leading to an estimated $238,000 in crypto stolen.

“After investigation, it is clear that this was a social engineering attack on EuroDNS, the domain registrar used for .fi TLDs,” the firm explained in a Sept. 20 X (formerly Twitter) post. Approximately eight hours after the first warning of the attack, Balancer said its decentralized autonomous organization was actively addressing the DNS attack and was working to recover the Balancer UI.

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Discord crypto trading bot shuts down after “critical exploit”

None Trading, a trading tool for cryptocurrencies and nonfungible tokens built on Discord, has shut down due to a “critical exploit” within its infrastructure.

In a Sept. 20 announcement, None Trading said it had “lost a significant amount of funding” as well as “team tokens” crucial for its operations. “Alongside this, we have lost three core team members who are required to keep the project running healthily. This unfortunate incident has put us in a financial and infrastructural position that makes it simply impossible to continue running the company effectively.”

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DeFi market overview

Data from Cointelegraph Markets Pro and TradingView shows that DeFi’s top 100 tokens by market capitalization had a bearish week, with most tokens trading in the red on weekly charts. The total value locked into DeFi protocols reached $44 billion.

Thanks for reading our summary of this week’s most impactful DeFi developments. Join us next Friday for more stories, insights and education regarding this dynamically advancing space.

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