DeFi Is "Junk Vaporware": Roubini

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Mon, 11/16/2020 - 19:34
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Alex Dovbnya
Centralized finance is the future of fintech, according to economist Nouriel Roubini
DeFi Is "Junk Vaporware": Roubini
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American economist Nouriel Roubini has questioned the very purpose of the booming decentralized finance industry in a recent tweet, slamming it as “the new crypto fad” and “junk vaporware.”

He maintains that the existence of “great cheap” fintech solutions eliminates the need for fancy blockchain applications.

Getting deplatformed with Zelle

With Bitcoin surging back to its January 2018 highs and the total value locked in DeFi protocols surpassing $13.7 bln, it’s pointless to deny that the cryptocurrency industry is currently in the middle of a much-anticipated revival.      

While peer-to-peer crypto volumes remain steadily high in hyperinflation-stricken Venezuela, its citizens are ditching their worthless currency for Zelle, not Bitcoin.     

Venezuelanas use the Arizona-based payments network for easily sending money with the help of a mobile phone.

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The problem is that one has to have a U.S. bank account in order to use the app. To that end, the country relies on its tiny diaspora of expatriates. 

Furthermore, Venezuelans have to be at the mercy of centralized banking institutions that own the peer-to-peer payment company. In July, Wells Fargo abruptly removed their access to Zelle since the app is not intended for businesses.

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Stablecoins as a replacement

As crypto blogger JP Koning points out, stablecoins such as Tether could be a more viable solution for the Venezuelan people than Zelle:

“In the future, U.S. dollar stablecoins such as tether, paxos, or USD coin could be recruited by nations suffering from hyperinflation.”  

Roubini, however, is not that keen on stablecoins either. He was recently busy retweeting a Twitter thread with a baseless conspiracy theory about how Tether is conspiring with exchanges to fire up its printing press.

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About the author

Alex Dovbnya (aka AlexMorris) is a cryptocurrency expert, trader and journalist with extensive experience of covering everything related to the burgeoning industry — from price analysis to Blockchain disruption. Alex authored more than 1,000 stories for U.Today, CryptoComes and other fintech media outlets. He’s particularly interested in regulatory trends around the globe that are shaping the future of digital assets, can be contacted at alex.dovbnya@u.today.