March 13, 2020 MakerDAO’s governance body is considering an emergency shutdown due to undercollaterilization.

MakerDAO, the decentralized lending, and stablecoin issuance platform is under major financial and governance stresses. Due to the fast decline in the price of Ether, the primary type of collateral for the Maker system, the platform now has a collateral ratio below its minimum 150% target. At the time of Thursday’s governance call, $4 million worth of DAI, the platform’s USD-pegged stablecoin, was not collateralized. MakerDAO governance participants, including MKR holders and the Maker Foundation, are considering an emergency shutdown whereby the existing collateral would be returned and the platform would attempt to restart. Due to the speed of the market’s decline, Maker’s liquidation process was unable to function effectively, in turn leading to the system not being sufficiently collateralized. Aside from an emergency shutdown, the governance community is also considering reducing the DAI savings rate (DSR) and lengthening the duration of liquidation auctions. Maker is arguably the most systemically-important component of the DeFi ecosystem, and according to Rober Leshner, CEO of Compound Finance, a significant portion of the sector were not prepared for such an event, raising questions about the secondary effects on the DeFi industry as a whole.