Ethereum co-creator Vitalik Buterin is now the world’s youngest crypto billionaire amid ether’s 350% year-to-date surge

vitalik Buterin ethereum

The 27-year-old co-creator of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, is now the world’s youngest crypto billionaire after a 350% year-to-date surge in the price of his cryptocurrency.

Buterin’s Ether address, which he disclosed on Twitter in 2018, currently holds 333,521 ETH, worth some $1,125,299,854 as of 8:19 a.m. ET on Wednesday when Ether’s price was $3374.90.

Ethereum’s market cap is nearing $400 billion after a historic run for the second most popular cryptocurrency, which saw it reach heights of over $3,500 per coin before paring gains.

Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world, Binance, told Forbes there were several factors driving Ether’s meteoric run.

First, the rise of DeFi or, decentralized finance, is pushing more users into assets not held or distributed by central banks generally.

Second, user demand for ether to buy digital assets like non-fungible tokens (NFTs) could be driving prices higher.

“All of these use cases are moving right now, and people need the other coins to do this type of new transaction,” Zhao said. “Ethereum is one of those clear examples. That’s probably why Ether is going up.”

Ark Invest analysts also laid out three reasons why ether is set to continue its bull run in a note to clients on Monday.

The analysts said a rise in institutional investment, strong “on-chain signals” of increasing ETH use, and “imminent protocol upgrades” are set to buoy the coin moving forward.

EX-Ark Invest analyst James Wang even laid out a case for ether to hit $40,000 per coin in a recent interview.

If the cryptocurrency does rise to those previously unimaginable heights, ether’s co-founder Vitalik Buterin would be worth an incredible $13,340,840,000.

Read more: Ex-Ark analyst James Wang breaks down his bull case for Ethereum as its token breaches an all-time high of $3,300 – and explains why it could eventually reach $40,000

Buterin was born in Kolomna, Russia, in 1994 and later moved to Canada with his family, growing up in Toronto. He then briefly attended the University of Waterloo before dropping out after being awarded $100,000 from the Thiel Fellowship.

The Russian-Canadian Buterin then put all his efforts into Ethereum before revealing the cryptocurrency in a whitepaper in 2013.

The Ethereum initial coin offering (ICO) was the second public coin offering ever when it took place in 2014.

If you had bought 100 ETH at the time, it would have cost around $30. That 100 ETH would be worth $337,490 today.

Lately, Buterin has taken to sharing in the success of his cryptocurrency. The ETH founder recently donated roughly $600,000 in ether and maker tokens to a COVID-19 relief fund for India.

Buterin adds his name to a growing list of crypto billionaires including the Winklevoss twins and Sam Bankman-Fried.

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3 reasons why ethereum is breaking out to new all-time highs, according to Ark Invest

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Ether, the digital cryptocurrency tied to the ethereum network, soared as much as 5% to new records on Monday, hitting a high of $3,203.

The digital currency, which is often used for transactions in the digital market place for NFTs, now has a total market capitalization of $366 billion, according to data from CoinMarketCap. Bitcoin’s total value currently sits at $1.07 trillion.

The gains in ether have outpaced the gains in bitcoin year-to-date. Ether is up more than 300%, where as bitcoin is up about 95% based off of Monday afternoon prices.

These are the three reasons why ether continues to break higher, according to a Monday note from Ark Invest analyst Frank Downing.

1. “Increased institutional interest.”

Downing points out that four ether ETFs have launched on the Toronto Stock Exchange over the past two weeks, “making it easy for institutions to gain access as demand for crypto exposure broadens beyond bitcoin,” the note said.

“In addition, institutions and companies like European Investment Bank and Visa have validated the Ethereum blockchain by announcing issuance and settlement use cases, respectively,” Downing said.

2. “Strong on-chain signals.”

“Usage of the Ethereum network is increasing and, by some measures, outpacing that of Bitcoin, as shown by the number of active wallets and total transaction fees. In our view, Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and Non-fungible tokens (NFTs), both of which are burgeoning, explain Ethereum’s recent breakout,” Downing explained.

3. “Imminent protocol upgrades.”

The Ethereum Improvement Proposal 1559 is slated to go live in July, and will significantly change Ethereum’s transaction fee model, according to the note.

“Aiming to lower the volatility of ethereum’s fees, EIP-1559 introduces a mechanism to burn some transaction fees, detracting from circulating supply and introducing deflation to the ethereum ecosystem. The impact on ether’s price could be like that associated with a bitcoin halving event,” Downing said.

Two risks associated with ether’s recent rise

But there are still risks associated with ether and its rising price, Downing cautioned.

The first risk relates to the frequent and significant leverage associated with DeFi applications, which “given interoperability within the ethereum blockchain, might compound the leverage associated with other products,” Downing said.

“In the event of a downward spiral in ether’s price, the losses associated with deleveraging could be significant. Additionally, EIP-1559 could become a contentious upgrade, as miners will bear the brunt of fees burned. A miner revolt could impede the progress of the EIP-1559 upgrade,” Downing concluded.

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Ethereum network upgrade that will destroy coins could cause ‘explosive growth’ in the ether price, experts say

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Ether is the cryptocurrency on the Ethereum network.

A change in the Ethereum network to cut the number of ether tokens in existence could set the stage for “explosive growth” in the world’s second-biggest cryptocurrency, experts said.

On Friday, Ethereum blockchain developers approved a major change to how the network runs, to come into force this summer.

It is set to overhaul the bitcoin rival’s auction system, under which users send tokens to pay for transactions to be completed by miners.

Under the changes, known as EIP 1559, users would send a base transaction fee to the network that would destroy or “burn” the ether tokens, reducing the number outstanding.

Cryptocurrency analysts have said that limiting ether, as the bitcoin system does, will put upward pressure on the price. That combined with the recent enthusiasm for crypto coins means the price could rise sharply, they said.

“What is most exciting to cryptocurrency traders is that now Ethereum will reduce the amount of outstanding ether by destroying some of the tokens every time it’s used to process some transactions,” Edward Moya, the chief market analyst at currency firm Oanda, told Insider.

“Ethereum’s never-ending supply was the least attractive part about it, and now optimism is growing that the world’s most-used blockchain will see a major shift in retail and institutional buying.”

Read more: Wedbush says to buy these 16 stocks that represent its analysts’ best ideas and are set to outperform in the next 6 to 12 months

Justin d’Anethan, a sales manager at the cryptocurrency exchange Equos, told Insider that the proposed changes to the Ethereum network should “not only make the blockchain more eco-friendly” by making transactions more efficient, “but should also make it more scalable.”

“Add to this fewer coins in circulation,” he said, “and you have a recipe for explosive growth.”

However, crypto skeptics have argued that the surge in the prices of the world’s top cryptocurrencies has set them up for sharp falls.

The ether price has risen by more than 130% so far in 2021, taking it to $1,734 on Monday morning, well off a high of more than $2,000 touched in February.

It rose above $1,400 in 2018 before slumping to below $100 later that year.

The changes are set to come into force in July or August as part of a system upgrade known as the “London hard fork.”

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Evolve Funds files for Ether ETF weeks after winning Canadian approval for its bitcoin fund

FILE PHOTO: Representation of the Ethereum virtual currency standing on the PC motherboard are seen in this illustration picture, February 3, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: Representation of the Ethereum virtual currency standing on the PC motherboard are seen in this illustration picture


Just weeks after winning approval for one of North America’s first bitcoin ETFs, Evolve Funds is looking to give investors exposure to Ether. 

On Tuesday Evolve Funds announced it has filed a preliminary prospectus with the Canadian securities regulator for an Ether ETF. 

If approved, the fund (ETHR) would give investors exposure to the daily price movements of the US dollar price of Ether, the world’s second largest cryptocurrency. 

“Ether is the building block for a revolution in digital finance which is still in its infancy,” said Evolve CIO and COO Elliot Johnson in a press release. “All Ether transactions are recorded on the Ethereum computer network, which is a decentralized, open-source blockchain featuring smart contract functionality. Ethereum is the most actively used blockchain with Ether being used to pay for transaction fees and computational services.”

Evolve’s filing comes after CI Global Asset Management and Mike Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital filed a similar prospectus for an Ether ETF last week. 

Canada has not yet approved an Ether ETF, but it approved two publicly traded bitcoin ETFs this year. The funds exploded during their first days of trading. The Purpose Bitcoin ETF traded $165 million-worth of shares in its first day, while the Evolve Bitcoin ETF raised $421 million in two days, according to Bloomberg

Canada’s crypto-positive stance is raising hopes that the US will soon follow suit. In the latest attempt to launch a bitcoin ETF in the US, the Chicago Board Options Exchange filed an SEC request for approval of VanEck’s bitcoin ETF on Monday.

 

 

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Bitcoin plunges 18% as investors grow wary of record-breaking rally

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Bitcoin plunged as much as 18%, to $45,000, on Tuesday before slightly paring some losses as sky-high cryptocurrency valuations unnerved investors.

The cryptocurrency traded 13% lower, at $47,608.24, as of 11:45 p.m. in New York.

Bitcoin has soared in 2021, with the price more than doubling this year to reach a record $58,350.41. Increased interest from big companies such as Tesla, as well as record amounts of stimulus, have powered the rally.

Yet investors appeared to second-guess the record-breaking run on Monday, with bitcoin plunging from close to $58,000 to below $47,000 before recovering somewhat.

The fall coincided with a sharp drop in technology stocks that saw the US’s Nasdaq index slide 2.46%, suggesting investors were becoming wary of the more expensive parts of the market. Both bitcoin and tech stocks slid again on Tuesday.

Expectations of stronger growth and inflation have boosted bond yields and made the more risky areas of the market look less attractive.

Elon Musk’s comments over the weekend that bitcoin and rival token ether “seem high” appeared to trigger the latest move lower. The Tesla boss has played a large part in the cryptocurrency rally, and his words carry weight among many bitcoin enthusiasts.

Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at currency firm Oanda, said: “The fall that has taken place since shows just how wild an instrument it is, how overbought it had become and how influential the Tesla CEO now is in the space.”

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen also added to the wariness around cryptocurrencies, telling CNBC on Monday that bitcoin is “an extremely inefficient way of conducting transactions, and the amount of energy that’s consumed in processing those transactions is staggering.”

“I don’t think that bitcoin… is widely used as a transaction mechanism,” she said. “To the extent it is used, I fear it’s often for illicit finance.”

The ether (ETH) price also tumbled on Tuesday, with the Ethereum network’s currency down around 8.9% to $1,557. XRP was down around 15% while Binance’s coin was roughly 13% lower.

Pankaj Balani, chief executive of crypto derivatives exchange Delta, said the downward correction in bitcoin and other currencies had been coming.

“Some leverage has been cleared but the volatility should persist for a few sessions followed by a consolidation in BTC and ETH prices before the next move up.”

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Ethereum tumbles 8% after exploding to new all-time high past $1,430, still outperforms Bitcoin’s 26% year-to-date gain

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  • Ethereum tumbled 7% on Wednesday after hitting a new all-time high of over $1,430.
  • Directly tied to its explosive growth is the rise of projects built on Decentralized Finance, or DeFi.
  • Ethereum users receive over 4% in annual interest, while traditional banks offer less than 0.5%.
  • Sign up here our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Ethereum dropped 8% on Wednesday after shooting past $1,430 a day earlier, hitting a new all-time high for the cryptocurrency powering the world’s largest smart contract platform.

Its price fell to around $1,265 as of 1150 GMT, retracing the previous day’s record high.

Ether, the native cryptocurrency of Ethereum’s blockchain network, has soared 33% year-to-date to reach its latest peak, only a couple of weeks after its crypto cousin Bitcoin reached a new high near $42,000. 

Ethereum’s gain clearly shows it has outperformed Bitcoin’s 26% rally so far this year in their respective US dollar pairs. Its positive momentum indicates how projects built on decentralized finance, more commonly known as DeFi, are creating a more scalable infrastructure for smart contracts rather than relying on brokerages, exchanges, or banks.

The cryptocurrency has always been the lesser known rival to Bitcoin for a mainstream audience, according to Samantha Yap Founder & CEO at YAP Global. But an increased awareness and understanding of what it’s about shows it could get gradually adopted as the DeFi industry grows. 

That the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization hit a new high indicates the beginning of DeFi “eating traditional finance,” said Hsuan-Ting CEO of Furucombo, a DeFi money lego application. “More and more people adopting it signals a great future for the industry regardless of whether people are using ETH to pay for something or just holding it to capture the network’s value,” he said.

Over $25 billion worth of crypto assets have been locked into DeFi applications built on Ethereum over 2020, according to DeFi Pulse. The sector now offers loans, synthetic stocks, interest-earning assets, exchanges, derivatives, options, and credit systems.

Read More: The head of active equity at Wells Fargo’s $607 billion asset management arm shares how she worked her way up from the call center 29 years ago – and pinpoints 3 trends transforming the investment landscape today

Ethereum’s users are already able to receive more than 4% in annual interest, while traditional banks offer below 0.5% interest, as well as gaining exposure to various derivatives products that have an inherently global market due to the openness of public blockchain infrastructure, according to Sergey Nazarov, the co-founder of the world’s largest DeFi project Chainlink.

“When you consider the 10X growth in DeFi’s market size, the consistently higher rates of return from DeFi financial products when compared to banks and the inherently global nature of DeFi financial products, together with the devaluation of traditional assets through high inflation and unchecked money printing, anyone can begin to see that DeFi is where the next flight to safety will happen and is in fact one of the existing forces that’s driving adoption of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum today,” Nazarov said.

Read More: GOLDMAN SACHS: Buy these 25 stocks best-positioned to juice profits in 2021 as stimulus and vaccine progress spur economic growth

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