THORChain (RUNE) Launches Its Highly-Anticipated Lending Protocol

RUNE's price dropped more than 7.50% shortly after the launch of the project's highly-anticipated lending protocol.

THORChain (RUNE), a cross-chain decentralized exchange (DEX) that has been making waves with its latest features and functionalities. With the introduction of Streaming Swaps and the eagerly awaited THORChain Lending Protocol, THORChain is proving to be a pioneer in driving adoption and usage, while also defying broader market trends.

Despite the series of positive developments, RUNE was the biggest 24-hour loser according to CoinMarketCap. At press time, the altcoin’s price was down more than 7.50%. Despite this, RUNE’s weekly performance remained firmly set in the green zone due to the positive momentum the project had garnered in the week leading up to the launch of its Lending Protocol and the implementation of Streaming Swaps.

Streaming Swaps Revolutionize Cross-Chain Trading

In an effort to enhance user experience and optimize trading strategies, THORChain recently unveiled its Streaming Swaps feature on its THORSwap platform. This new functionality allows users to break down cross-chain trades into smaller, manageable parts, which are then executed over an extended period of time. This departure from traditional trading methods not only ensures price optimization but also addresses issues of slippage that have plagued the decentralized finance (DeFi) space.

Prior to Streaming Swaps, traders had to manually carry out multiple swaps to achieve low slippage, which often resulted in high gas fees and increased complexity. The introduction of Streaming Swaps simplifies this process by enabling users to execute a single transaction, which is then managed by the THORChain protocol to secure the best possible price. This innovation not only streamlines the trading process but also reduces the friction associated with executing multiple transactions.

The Rise of Streaming Swaps and Price Momentum

Since its launch earlier this month, Streaming Swaps have gained rapid traction among users, particularly among larger traders or "whales." DeFi researcher "Hercules DeFi" reported that these influential players have begun leveraging Streaming Swaps for substantial transactions. The largest-ever swap on THORChain's platform saw 3,150 ETH exchanged for a staggering 2,482,348 RUNE tokens, equivalent to nearly $3.65 million. This utilization of Streaming Swaps by prominent traders underscores its effectiveness in optimizing trades and boosting confidence in the protocol's capabilities.

Moreover, THORChain's trading volume has exhibited a notable upward trajectory over the past few days, in contrast to the overall downtrend witnessed in the broader cryptocurrency market. This upward momentum has been particularly beneficial for the RUNE token, which has struggled to recover from a significant decline, trading over 90% down from its previous peak.

THORChain's Lending Protocol Sets a New Standard

As if the introduction of Streaming Swaps wasn't enough to bolster THORChain's appeal, the platform recently unveiled its highly anticipated Lending Protocol. This innovative feature offers users the ability to borrow BTC and ETH with zero interest, while maintaining the flexibility of a decentralized ecosystem. The amount users can borrow is determined by the Collateralization Ratio (CR), which ranges from 200% to 500%.

What sets THORChain's Lending Protocol apart is its unique approach to collateralization. When a user opens a THORChain loan, the provided collateral is converted into RUNE tokens, and the difference between the collateral's value and the loan amount is burned. This ingenious mechanism eliminates the need for liquidations or interest, further aligning THORChain's offerings with the ethos of decentralization and user empowerment.

Fundamentals and Delphi Digital Report

In a testament to THORChain's solid fundamentals and growing appeal, Delphi Digital, a respected research firm in the blockchain space, published a comprehensive report on the protocol's intricacies. Interestingly, since the report's release, the price of the RUNE token has surged by a remarkable 83%. This extraordinary price performance stands in stark contrast to the market's overall downturn during the same period, illustrating THORChain's capacity to not only defy market trends but also inspire confidence through transparent and robust fundamentals.

A Journey of Challenges and Triumphs

THORChain's journey has been marked by challenges that have ultimately contributed to its growth and resilience. Facing consecutive hacks in July 2021 resulting in a loss of $13 million, the project demonstrated its capacity to rebound and learn from setbacks. The meteoric rise of the RUNE token, soaring to $20.24 during the peak of DeFi token valuations in May 2021, underscored its potential.

Recently, a security threat surfaced as an independent blockchain highlighted the imposition of high funding fees to short RUNE. This revelation demonstrated the platform's appeal as a potential target for exploiters, especially as it prepares to unveil its collateralized lending services, an expansion that promises to further elevate its utility.

Price Overview

RUNE suffered the biggest 24-hour loss in the cryptocurrency market according to CoinMarketCap. At press time, the market tracking website indicated that the altcoin was changing hands at $1.61. This was after it saw its price decrease 7.50% throughout the past day of trading. Despite the 24-hour loss, RUNE’s weekly performance remained firmly in the green zone at +18.76%.

Along with its price drop, RUNE also recorded a 22.59% decline in its daily trading volume. As a result, the total stood at $139,447,016 at press time.

The fall in RUNE’s price during the past day of trading, as well as its declining trading volume following the launch of the Streaming Swaps suggests that investor and trader interest in the cryptocurrency is waning. This may be another example of the “buy the rumor and sell the news” trend observed several times during this latest bear market. Now that the Streaming Swaps have gone live, members of the cryptocurrency space will most likely move on to attempt to identify the next short-term trade opportunity to take advantage of.

Levels to Watch This Week

Daily chart for RUNE/USDT (Source: TradingView)

A significant medium-term bullish technical flag was triggered in the past 48 hours. During this time, the 50-day EMA line crossed above the 100-day EMA line. This signaled that there was a substantial shift in RUNE’s momentum, which currently favors bulls as a result. If this bullish flag is validated, then RUNE’s price could attempt to flip the resistance level at $1.970 into support. A confirmation of this bullish thesis will be if the altcoin closes today’s trading session above the $1.626 price point.

Failure to close today’s candle above this level may result in RUNE’s price dropping to $1.425 in the upcoming couple of days. Continued sell pressure may even push the altcoin’s price down to the next crucial support level at $1.425 before the end of the month.

4-hour chart for RUNE/USDT (Source: TradingView)

Despite the retracement that RUNE’s price experienced over the past 24 hours, the cryptocurrency’s price remained in a positive price channel. This channel formed during the course of the past few days after RUNE printed higher highs and higher lows during this period.

RUNE’s price had already fallen below the $1.625 support in the current 4-hour candle, but was able to recover to trade above this mark at press time. Nonetheless, the altcoin’s price was still at risk of dropping below this price point before the end of today’s trading session. Traders and investors will want to keep an eye on the positive trend line, or the lower level of the positive price channel, on RUNE’s 4-hour chart.

A drop to this level may result in RUNE’s price executing a swift rebound to back above $1.625 before potentially continuing to climb to $1.970. On the other hand, a break below this level could lead to RUNE’s price dropping to $1.425 within the following 12 hours.