Ether (ETH), the second largest cryptocurrency and native to the Ethereum blockchain, surpassed the $ 3,000 mark for the first time and set a new record this Monday (03). Both digital currency and its network are widely used in decentralized finance (DeFi), smart contracts and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Thus, the increased interest in these tools boosted the cryptocurrency, causing a sequence of 9 consecutive days of appreciation.
Ether exceeds market value of Nvidia and Mastercard
According to the index CoinDesk, ether was traded for $ 3,272 this afternoon, its highest value so far. The cryptocurrency has been rising steadily since April 24, its longest period of uninterrupted high since the digital currency boom in late 2017 and early 2018. Thus, its price has quadrupled over 2021, exceeding even the pace of appreciation of bitcoin (BTC), the largest cryptocurrency on the market.
Now, ether capitalizes about $ 380 billion, according to data from the CoinMarketCap, second only to bitcoin, whose market value exceeds $ 1 trillion. The cryptocurrency has also become more valuable than multinational companies like Mastercard, Nvidia, Bank of America and Disney.
What is behind this high?
This increase was mainly driven by the increased interest of large institutional investors in ether. What the cryptocurrency is going through at the moment is similar to what bitcoin went through earlier in the year. Tesla, for example, bought $ 1.5 billion in BTC in January, while Microstrategy announced another $ 1 billion purchase in late February.
However, the interest of companies is not only in the profit potential that cryptocurrency can provide as an asset. Unlike bitcoin, ether has many practical features and is one of the most used digital currencies in transactions.
The Ethereum blockchain is the primary choice for decentralized finance. Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, are also generally registered on this network, while the majority of sales and auctions are carried out with ether.
Ether achieves bitcoin independence
An investment research and analysis firm, FundStrat, predicted last week that ether should reach $ 10,000 by the end of the year in the face of rapid and intense growth in decentralized finance. Thus, the Ethereum blockchain and its native cryptocurrency are gaining increasing importance both in the financial market and in the implementation of new technologies.
Faced with this favorable scenario, the ether finally achieved independence. Historically, bitcoin has always carried the entire market with it, and during the first quarter of 2021 this dynamic remained true. However, now ether has reversed roles and has gained such relevance that its price no longer depends on bitcoin, becoming the main driver of appreciation in the sector.
Ethereum co-founder becomes billionaire
After the new ether price record, blockchain co-founder Ethereum Vitalik Buterin became a billionaire. In October 2018, he released his personal address that now records 333,520 ETH, which is worth approximately $ 1.1 billion. He has revealed in the past that he also has other secondary digital wallets and that he has no intention of selling his cryptocurrencies.
With information: CoinDesk