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News/Renzo's ezETH Depeg Sparks DeFi Chaos

Renzo's ezETH Depeg Sparks DeFi Chaos

Van Thanh Le

Apr 24 2024

2 months ago3 minutes read
Cubic humanoid robot symbolizing the Renzo Protocol's market turmoil

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Renzo's ezETH Stumbles, Causing Massive Liquidations

Renzo's liquid restaking token, ezETH, spiraled into a crisis early Wednesday, plunging to a shocking $688 on Uniswap. Typically pegged 1:1 with wrapped ether (WETH), the token’s unexpected dive to nearly 23% of its pegged value highlights a dramatic disruption in its market stability. 

ezETH/WETH chart (15m) at the time of the incident. Source: Dexscreener

This steep fall underscores the fragile balance within the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector, exacerbated by a recent controversial announcement on the tokenomics of Renzo's native token, REZ.

Amidst the financial turmoil, the misleading presentation of REZ's token allocation—merely 5% set aside for an initial airdrop—ignited immediate backlash. 

The community's outrage was palpable, spotlighting deep-seated issues of transparency and governance within token distributions. 

As a result, the DeFi ecosystem saw a whirlwind of liquidations, topping $60 million. Platforms like Gearbox and Morpho bore the brunt, facing a tidal wave of ezETH-collateralized sell-offs, sparking what has been described as a "liquidation cascade."

Yet, the market displayed resilience with a swift rebound, as ezETH prices climbed above $3,000, settling around $3,172, while ether stood at $3,281. This recovery, however, was marred by ongoing concerns over DeFi governance, especially following pointed criticisms from Aave governance delegate Marc Zeller about platforms like Morpho failing to shield users adequately.

The community's sentiment soured further due to the perceived preferential treatment in token distribution during REZ’s Binance launchpool, which starkly contrasted with the handling of ezETH holders. Such disparities have stoked fears over equity and fairness in DeFi, calling for a reevaluation of risk management and governance structures to prevent future debacles.

Experts, including crypto analyst Hitesh Malviya, argue that a mix of thin liquidity and high leverage is a recipe for disaster, triggering rapid position liquidations and severe market disruptions. Furthermore, the debacle has renewed scrutiny over liquidity management on platforms like Blast, a layer-two Ethereum network, which saw its $200 million liquidity pool heavily impacted. 

Amidst these market upheavals, security vulnerabilities were exploited. A phishing attack masquerading as the official Renzo X account led to a user losing nearly $300,000. 

Another investor's misfortune culminated in a $90,000 loss from a $900,000 leveraged position, erased by the abrupt downturn. 

Meanwhile, a savvy investor operating under czsamsunsb.eth capitalized on the chaos, netting a substantial 121.65 ETH profit by strategically maneuvering through the market’s volatility, spending 4,099 ETH to acquire 4,221 ezETH. 

After the crisis, Renzo increased the allocation for the first season airdrop from 5% to 7% due to user dissatisfaction with the tokenomics. The first airdrop, now set for April 30, will distribute 7% of the tokens, with the remaining 5% distributed in the subsequent phase. 

Participants with at least 360 Renzo points are eligible for the airdrop at the token generation event. Additionally, under the new update, 99% of all eligible wallets will have their airdrop fully unlocked at launch, as opposed to the previous plan of vesting half of the airdrop for the top 5% of eligible wallets over six months.  


Renzo's native REZ token launch and airdrop aim to foster decentralization and community engagement, yet the recent ezETH depeg fiasco underscores the fragility of DeFi, igniting calls for improved governance, risk management, and transparency within the sector. 


1: What caused the ezETH depeg crisis? 

The depeg was triggered by a liquidity crunch on Uniswap, exacerbated by high leverage and thin liquidity, leading to a cascade of liquidations topping $60 million on platforms like Gearbox and Morpho. Concerns over the REZ tokenomics and governance issues further fueled the turmoil.

2: How is Renzo addressing decentralization and community involvement? 

Renzo is airdropping 5% of the 10 billion REZ token supply to users based on their ezPoints, allowing them to participate in governance decisions. Community groups like Milady Maker and SchizoPosters will receive 2% allocations, fostering a sense of ownership.

3: What measures are in place to ensure fair token distribution? 

Major wallet holders will receive a 50% token unlock at the TGE, with the remaining tokens vesting linearly over six months. Unclaimed or unvested tokens will be redirected to active users, incentivizing long-term engagement.

4: How has Renzo Protocol performed so far? 

As of the latest update, Renzo Protocol boasted an impressive $3.5 billion Total Value Locked (TVL), a dominant 33.5% restaking market share, and a user base exceeding 250,000 during Season 1.

This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.

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