What Is Liquid Staking?
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What Is Liquid Staking?

3 Min.

Liquid staking innovatively tokenizes staked assets, mitigating liquidity constraints inherent in traditional staking mechanisms. This approach grants users heightened flexibility to employ their staked assets across diverse DeFi platforms. By enhancing token utility and value, liquid staking catalyzes the emergence of novel applications, thus promoting widespread crypto adoption.

Basics

Liquid staking is an innovative approach that allows users to earn rewards on their staked assets while still being able to use them. This guide explores the principles, mechanics, significance, advantages, drawbacks, and points of differentiation of staking methods.

What Is Liquid Staking?

Liquid staking transforms staked assets into tokens, representing an evolution of traditional staking methods. Traditionally, staking involves locking assets on a Proof of Stake (PoS) blockchain to earn rewards and secure the network. However, this can render assets illiquid for the duration of the staking period. Liquid staking resolves this dilemma by offering users liquid staking tokens (LSTs) in exchange for their staked assets. For instance, staking ETH via platforms like Lido results in receiving stETH tokens, allowing users to access rewards while maintaining liquidity.

The Significance of Liquid Staking

Liquid staking alleviates liquidity constraints inherent in traditional staking, enhancing user flexibility and asset accessibility. Platforms such as Lido facilitate the tokenization of staked assets into LSTs, enabling unrestricted trading, DeFi application utilization, and collateralization. Moreover, liquid staking stimulates blockchain network expansion by encouraging greater user engagement from those previously hesitant to commit assets to prolonged staking periods.

Advantages and Drawbacks of Liquid Staking

Advantages

  • Expanded utility: Users can utilize staked assets in diverse DeFi applications while still earning staking rewards.
  • Reduced opportunity cost: Liquid staking enables users to capitalize on trading and investment opportunities without sacrificing liquidity.
  • Crypto adoption boost: Liquid staking enhances token value and utility, fostering new application development and promoting crypto adoption.

Drawbacks

  • Slashing risk: Dishonest validators face penalties, potentially resulting in users losing staked tokens.
  • Centralization concerns: Concentration of tokens in a single protocol with its own validators may undermine decentralization.
  • Regulatory ambiguity: Evolving cryptocurrency regulations pose uncertainties, necessitating compliance checks before engaging in liquid staking and DeFi activities.

Liquid Staking vs. Extended Restaking

Liquid staking revolutionizes asset liquidity by tokenizing staked assets, offering immediate flexibility. A step beyond, liquid restaking, pioneered by EigenLayer, broadens security applications beyond PoS blockchains to oracles and rollups. Notable liquid staking ventures include Lido, Binance ETH (BETH), and Rocket Pool (RETH), while liquid restaking initiatives comprise ether.fi, Puffer, and Kelp DAO.

Conclusion

Liquid staking is a flexible method of engaging in staking ecosystems. Tokenizing staked assets and enhancing liquidity enables innovative digital asset utilization.

Liquid Staking
Extended Restaking
Staking
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Hexn operates under HEXN (CZ) s.r.o. and HEXN Markets LLC. HEXN (CZ) s.r.o. is incorporated in the Czech Republic with the company number 19300662, registered office at Cimburkova 916/8, Žižkov, Praha. HEXN (CZ) s.r.o. is registered as a virtual assets service provider (VASP). HEXN Markets LLC is incorporated in St. Vincent and Grenadines with the company number 2212 LLC 2022, registered office at Beachmont Business Centre, 379, Kingstown, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines