Liquid staking solutions such as Lido and Rocket Pool now have more total value locked (TVL) than decentralized exchanges (DEXs), making them the top category of DeFi protocols, according to data from crypto analytics platform DefiLlama.
For the first time, the Liquid Staking category has surpassed DEXes in total value locked, making it the leading category in DeFi by TVL dominance pic.twitter.com/HQ0Ug8UweR— DefiLlama.com (@DefiLlama) April 26, 2023
TVL is a metric that measures the dollar value of all cryptocurrencies locked within a protocol’s smart contracts.
Liquid staking protocols have just recently taken the top spot. On April 13, there was only $17.19 billion of crypto locked in liquid staking contracts, compared to $18.89 billion in DEXs, according to archived information. However, DEXs have experienced a $1.66 billion decline to $17.2 billion, while liquid staking solutions have experienced a $280 million increase to $17.47 billion, giving them the top spot.
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Liquid staking protocols are staking pools that stake crypto on behalf of users. These protocols also issue tokens to users that represent the person's deposited crypto. Because these tokens can be used in DeFi apps, liquid staking protocols allow users to both simultaneously stake their coins and use them in other applications.
According to DefiLlama’s May 1 data, Lido (stETH) is still the top staking protocol with $11.54 billion of cryptocurrency locked inside its contracts. Coinbase Wrapped Staked Ether (CBETH) is a distant second with $2.19 billion locked, and Rocket Pool (rETH) is third with $1.46 billion. The remaining protocols have less than $1 billion of TVL each but add up to $2.22 billion collectively.
Lido was the first liquid staking protocol, and it launched in 2020. Liquid staking has become more popular as Ethereum moved to proof-of-stake and allowed withdrawals.