Predictions Article



Top 5 Decentralized Finance predictions for 2020 and beyond; plus 20 key Fintech developments


Hi Fintech futurists —

In the long take this week, I revisit decentralized finance, providing both an overview and 2019 update. The meat of the writing is the following long-range predictions for the space in the next decade — (1) the role of Fintech champions like Revolut and Robinhood as it relates to DeFi, (2) increasing systemic correlation and self-reference in the space, which requires emerging metrics for risk and transparency, and (3) the potential for national services like Social Security and student lending to run on DeFi infrastucture, (4) the promise of pulling real assets into DeFi smart contracts and earning staking rewards, and (5) continued importance of trying to bridge into Bitcoin. Here’s to an outlandish 2020!

Long Take

Decentralized Finance Overview

Happy holidays, good people! As 2020 sneaks up on us, ’tis the season for predictions and prognostications. Which makes me realize how much I miss being able to get into a meaty, quantitative analysis in a well formatted PowerPoint document. I realize this because several blockchain industry analysts have put out absolutely fantastic work that should be your reference for the coming year. If you read anything but this newsletter, you’ve got to read:

  1. Blockchain Capital’s 2019 Year in Review

  2. Messari Research Crypto Theses for 2020

  3. DappRadar 2019 dapp Industry Review

So let’s narrow our entire lens to decentralized finance. There’s a lot to say about the overlap of Fintech and blockchain, but let’s find the very edge of the frontier and focus right there. I am talking about financial manufacturing engines that sit on large, distributed, open source, programmable infrastructure. I am talking about global cyborg money, flying around between regulatory frameworks, finding the weak spots, and building cathedrals of complexity before anyone can notice. I am talking about systemic risk, and the promise of what is most likely the future of financial services after Google, Facebook, Ant Financial, and Apple dismember the banks.

To catch you up, here are the basics. If you already know the basics (you anarchist devil!) scroll down for the predictions below…