How the Last DAO and Bitfinex Hacks Affected on Bitcoin Exchanges

How the Last DAO and Bitfinex Hacks Affected on Bitcoin Exchanges

We are not planning to concentrate on the main points of the Bitfinex hack itself and consequent makes an attempt at resolution. Instead we are aiming to bit on the immediate effects on the freshly shaped capital market structures, however the market normally and my company especially more experienced the hack and what changes we are seeing in the market as a results of this event. Simply detain mind that these area unit our experiences and our customers’ who have a very specific expectation from the marketplace.


The other fascinating development that has happened following Bitfinex’s difficulties may have a lot of information about the danger taken once putting assets on an exchange with a murky possession structure or one headquartered in an offshore jurisdiction. Something we have forever done is assessed the counterparties we do business with supported transparency and location, favoring counterparties headquartered in well documented jurisdictions that offer monetary customers with acceptable levels of legal protection a welcome development.

Among esteemed market participants, there has forever been an expectation that firms can perform KYC and AML checks on their customers. We are currently seeing customers requesting an analogous level of speech act from their exchange partners; one thing we must always all encourage. The final observation we have noted is how customers have started spreading risk rather more pro-actively across multiple exchanges. We have picked up various new customers over recent weeks who, when asked, ensure that they are cacophonic their commercialism capital across multiple firms and opportunities.

While beforehand they’ll have used one exchange they’re currently recognizing that multiple accounts minimizes their risk of losing everything through an exchange failure, so they need recognized that merely wishing on the exchange being giant and established doesn’t offer any real protection. It additionally implies that they will be sure to own funds on the market to require advantage of opportunities once they arise.


The initial and most blatant impact following the Bitfinex hack was the decline within the worth of bitcoins. The market still remembers the persistent slide in bitcoin price when Mt GoX, so the immediate patellar reflex reaction of decrease was not surprising. In parallel to cost decline, volume within the market became terribly intermittent. Several active market participants followed a similar course of action that initial world followed. We tend to take any collateral that was not needed to fund existing position hedges and straightaway force these back to our cold storage wallets. Whereas there was no immediate suggestion of contagion risk, we felt it was higher to require action initial and then watch how this case developed.

However, the behavior of deposit markets’ additional fascinating. Initially, any volume within the market dried up, however since then as markets have begun to come back to traditional we’ve seen a considerable modification in the unfold offered on leverage exchanges between USD and BTC deposit rates. Before the Bitfinex hack it absolutely was potential to induce 15-20% come back on USD rates accustomed finance margin positions however bitcoin deposits were down at 1.5-2%. To us a two hundredth premium on USD deposits implicit a large credit risk premium, and if the credit risk premium on USD was correct, then the danger adjusted come back on the market on BTC deposits was, effectively, negative. One thing that is unsustainable unless there are forces at work to control the market.

Now, this anomaly has begun to unwind. Since the Bitfinex credit event BTC rates, have up to 9-10%, still less than the speed on the market for lending United States greenbacks. We tend to believe that this rate starts to approach one thing that is additional property and reflects actuality level of counterparty risk. The ultimate purpose that need to form on this subject is the bitcoin futures markets. Implicit spreads during this market still have not adjusted to replicate, what we tend to believe, is that the new norm; they still imply a 15-20% unfold between USD and BTC rates. It will be fascinating to check that is correct.


The trade has handled the challenge well and is amazingly healthy and strong. Even half dozen months ago if a significant exchange like the one Bitfinex had unsuccessful there would are media headlines that bitcoin was dead, but today, due to the continued education of thought media by the trade as a full, we tend to see rather more measured headlines. The discussion has centered on whether Bitfinex would survive or not.

While no one desires to check failures of this sort providing an additional realistic rating of risk. Thus while liquidity is less than it was before the event, we are seeing clear proof of recovery and as for the bitcoin price, which has almost recovered everything lost on the initial collapse. Participants within the bitcoin capital markets area unit commencing to learn to take care and unfold their capital across multiple exchanges and counterparties they are additionally learning to avoid the businesses that hide behind a veil of secrecy or are headquartered in offshore jurisdictions wherever sick funds would prove well-nigh not possible.

Moreover, the underlying capital market has absorbed the shock and still acting well. In some ways that higher than before the hack by rating risk at additional realistic level. This all creates associate degree atmosphere that sets the bitcoin trade up well for following massive move within the trade. The promise of good contracts is that the reduction or elimination of counterparty risk from the equation. Whereas the DAO hack has briefly dampened the speed of adoption for this technology, it is inevitable, that this can be the approach the trade can move.

Exposing customers to the complete counterparty risk of all their assets is not acceptable long run and we are acting on some attention-grabbing structures with a number of our larger customers to resolve this downside and build that beginning toward a safer approach of commercialism.

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