Značka: Ether

IMF: Bitcoin matured to ‘an integral part of digital asset revolution’

Crypto is no longer an obscure asset class within the financial ecosystem, but a growing correlation with the stock market undercuts the “investment hedge” role of Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies, according to new International Money Fund (IMF) research.A blog post accompanying the survey highlights new risks associated with the growing interconnectedness between virtual assets and financial markets. Penned by IMF Monetary and Capital Markets Department director Tobias Adrian as well as economist Tara Iyer and Research deputy division chief Mahvash S. Qureshi, the article claims that the increasing correlation between crypto assets and stocks “limits their perceived risk diversification benefits and raises the risk of contagion across financial markets.”“Crypto assets such as Bitcoin have matured from an obscure asset class with few users to an integral part of the digital asset revolution,” the article read, adding that this transition comes along with financial stability concerns. Nothing that BTC and Ether (ETH) rarely correlated with major stock indexes before the pandemic, the authors agreed that crypto assets helped diversify risk for investors by acting as a hedge against swings in other asset classes. “But this changed after the extraordinary central bank crisis responses of early 2020,” the article reads, adding that crypto and stocks surged hand in hand as investors’ risk appetite grew.60-day correlation coefficient between Bitcoin and S&P 500 index. Source: IMFThe correlation coefficient between BTC and the S&P 500 index has jumped 3,600%, going from 0.01 to 0.36 after April 2020. This means that the two asset classes have been more closely rising and falling together since the coronavirus pandemic.Related: What should the crypto industry expect from regulators in 2022? Experts answer, Part 1With stronger correlation comes greater risks for Bitcoin, according to IMF experts. The growing interconnectedness between crypto and equity markets would permit the transmission of shocks that can destabilize financial markets. Noting that crypto assets are no longer on the fringe of the financial system, the authors summarized:“Given their relatively high volatility and valuations, their increased co-movement could soon pose risks to financial stability especially in countries with widespread crypto adoption.”The experts further called for a coordinated global regulatory framework “to guide national regulation and supervision and mitigate the financial stability risks stemming from the crypto ecosystem.”Last month, IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath made a similar call for a global policy regarding crypto. She argued that if countries were to ban crypto then they would not have any control over offshore exchanges that are not subject to their country’s regulations.

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These 3 cryptocurrencies are taking an even bigger hit during Bitcoin's price slump

The cost to purchase one Bitcoin (BTC) has dropped almost 10% in the last seven days and has been eyeing extended declines as it drops below $40,000, its interim psychological support, on Jan. 10.BTC/USD weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewNonetheless, the losses suffered by Bitcoin still appear lesser than some of its top crypto rivals’ performances. For instance, Cardano (ADA), the seventh-largest cryptocurrency by market valuation, has dropped by nearly 11% to around $1.15 in the last seven days.Similarly, XRP, the eighth-largest by market capitalization, has dipped by around 10% to nearly $0.75 in the same period.Meanwhile, some cryptocurrencies listed among the top 50 digital assets have experienced bigger losses between 15% and 30% in the last week. They include Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH), which has plunged over 16%, and its blockchain rival Terra, whose token LUNA has declined by nearly 20.50%.That said, listed below are three tokens among the top-50 cryptocurrencies that have performed worse than Bitcoin on a seven-day adjusted timeframe.Axie Infinity (-27.50%)Sitting atop more than 12,000% year-over-year profits, Axie Infinity (AXS) turned out to be one of the best places for traders to secure their profits.AXS price plunged nearly 27.5% to around $70 in the last seven days, thus becoming the worst performer among the large-cap coins. Meanwhile, against Bitcoin, the token slipped by almost 17% to 0.0017 BTC in the same period.ASX/USD vs. AXS/BTC daily price chart. Source: TradingViewNevertheless, AXS price may rebound in the coming days as one of the market’s key momentum indicators, the relative strength index (RSI), alerts about the token’s “oversold” status. In detail, the AXS’s daily RSI has slipped below 30, which traditional chartists interpret as a buy signal.More bullish cues for the Axie Infinity token have been coming from its downside target area between $64.50 and $50, as shown in the chart below. Notably, the $64.50-level served as a support to the AXS price during the August-September trading session in 2021.AXS/USD daily price chart featuring its potential downside targets. Source: TradingViewSimilarly, the levels around $50 prompted traders to accumulate AXS en masse on four occasions since Sept. 7 selloff.Conversely, breaking below the downside target range may end up pushing below $40, another support level from August 2021.AAVE (-25%)Unlike Axie Infinity, Aave (AAVE) native token of the same name had been sitting atop dwarfed year-over-year profits — nearly 60% since Jan. 10, 2021. Nonetheless, it has still become one of the worst-performing cryptocurrencies entering 2022.AAVE price dropped by a little over 24% to $200 in the last seven days. Meanwhile, the token’s performance against Bitcoin came out to be nearly -15%, reflecting that traders remained unconvinced about a bullish rebound in the Aave market.AAVE/USD vs. AAVE/BTC daily price chart. Source: TradingViewFor instance, AAVE’s daily RSI has been trending lower since Dec. 27 and now sits near 39. It now eyes an extended correction to reach its oversold levels below 30, meaning there is still room for the AAVE price to go further down than its current rates.The sell signal appears also as AAVE retests its two-month-old ascending trendline support, as shown in the chart below. AAVE has rebounded at least four times from the said rising level since Dec. 4. Therefore, if the coin breaks below it, its likelihood of correcting toward $165, another support level, would be higher.AAVE/USD daily price chart featuring its interim support and resistance targets. Source: TradingViewConversely, a rebound from the ascending trendline support may have AAVE rally toward the $250-275 trading range, which has a recent history of acting as both resistance and support. Since December 2021, the area has been able to cap AAVE’s upside attempts successfullyIOTA (-24%)Based on their seven-day adjusted timeframe performance, IOTA’s losses are marginally lesser than AAVE’s. But given the token has been sitting atop nearly 150% year-over-year profits, it appears like a good sell for traders looking to offset their losses elsewhere during the recent crypto market decline.Notably, IOTA’s price dipped a little over 24% to $1.00 in the past seven days. Against Bitcoin, IOTA is down about 14% in the same period.IOTA/USD vs. IOTA/BTC weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewRelated: Top 5 cryptocurrencies to watch in 2022: BTC, ETH, BNB, AVAX, MATICA bounce is now likely, however, as the token’s daily RSI neared oversold levels, while it dropped to a trading range of $0.93-$1.00, which has a recent history of attracting buyers.IOTA/USD daily price chart featuring its interim support and resistance targets. Source: TradingViewAs a result, if IOTA drops below the $0.93-$1.00 range, its likelihood of extending its price decline towards $0.71 — a support level from the May-June 2021 trading session — looks high. Conversely, a rebound action from the area could have the IOTA price eye $1.21 as its interim bull target.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Ethereum plunges 13%, down more than Bitcoin after Fed spooks crypto market

Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) plunged sharply hours after the U.S. Federal Reserve released the minutes of their December meeting, showing that they eye a faster timetable for hiking interest rates in 2022.The minutes showed that the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is in favor of raising short-term rates “sooner or at a faster pace than participants had earlier anticipated.” According to the CME Group, trading in the interest-rate futures market showed a two-thirds possibility of the first increase in March.Ether turned lower after the minutes were released, dropping by over 13.50% to as low as $3,300. Its plunge mirrored similar downside moves across the crypto market, with Bitcoin (BTC) shedding a little over 9% to nearly $42,100.ETH/USD four-hour price chart. Source: TradingViewIncontestably, ETH/USD returned more losses to its investors than BTC/USD after the Fed’s spook. It appears traders decided to unwind tokens sitting atop better long-term profits than Bitcoin. For instance, Ether’s returns in the last 12 months — even after the Fed-led drop — came out to be around 175%. On the other hand, Bitcoin’s profits were nearly 15.75% in the same period.Performance of top fifteen cryptocurrencies. Source: MessariSimilarly, Ethereum’s top rival Solana (SOL) also logged more losses than Bitcoin, dipping by more than 13.75% after the Fed news. Nonetheless, its 12-month profits came out to be more than 7,500%, signaling further extreme corrections if the crypto market’s bias remains skewed toward the bears.ETH/BTC reaches key rebound levelEther also plunged against Bitcoin, according to the performance of a widely-traded instrument, ETH/BTC, in the past 24 hours.The pair dropped by a little over 5% to hit 0.077 BTC. In doing so, it also reached a critical support level near 0.078 BTC that has recently been instrumental in keeping Ether bullish against Bitcoin by limiting the former’s downside bias.ETH/BTC daily price chart showing its key support level. Source: TradingViewMeanwhile, the 0.078 BTC-support also appeared to be the lower trendline of Ether’s descending triangle. Descending triangles are continuation patterns that typically send the price in the direction of its previous trend after a consolidation period.That increases Ether’s potential to remain stronger than Bitcoin in the long run, as long as it breaks above the triangle’s upper trendline with convincingly higher volumes.Too soon to fear the FedFor months, Fed officials were stuck to the opinion that higher inflation in the U.S. drew its inspiration from supply-chain bottlenecks, with chairman Jerome Powell asserting that it would resolve by itself. But in the latest meeting, he showed less conviction toward the so-called “inflation-is-transitory” narrative.That is primarily because the U.S. consumer price index (CPI) reached a nearly 40-year high in November 2021, hitting 6.8% year-over-year. Meanwhile, core consumer prices, which exclude energy and food categories, rose to 4.7% from a year earlier; it came to be above the Fed’s preferred inflation target of 2%.”There’s a real risk now, I believe, that inflation may be more persistent and…the risk of higher inflation becoming entrenched has increased,” said Powell on Dec. 15 last year after concluding the FOMC meeting.U.S headline inflation over the years. Source: Bloomberg, Bureau of Labor StatisticsMadison Faller, a global strategist at JPMorgan Private Bank, told Bloomberg that investors should not fear the Fed, noting that their three planned rate cuts in 2022 would do little in curbing down consumer prices. Excerpts from her statement:“Growth and inflation will be decelerating throughout 2022, but nonetheless remain above historic trend levels. We think this will call for a much lower risk of a Fed-induced material market correction.”As Cointelegraph also covered, fears of persistently higher inflation, which, in turn, tends to devalue cash, have prompted mainstream investors to park their money in the crypto sector. For instance, Thomas Peterffy, the billionaire founder of brokerage firm Interactive Brokers Group Inc., admitted that he holds 2-3% of his net assets in crypto just in case the fiat money “goes to hell.” Likewise, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio revealed last year that his investment portfolio contains Bitcoin.The outlook against inflation promised to offer some respite to Ether, which tends to tail the Bitcoin price movements. Meanwhile, Sean Farrell and Will McEvoy, strategists at Fundstrat Global, noted that investors should increase their investments across the smart contracts sector to get the most from the next market rebound.”Given the current macro backdrop, leverage within the Bitcoin market, and recent robustness seen in the altcoin market, we think it’s appropriate to be overweight Ethereum and other smart contract platforms,” they said in a note, adding:”We probably would not bet the farm near-term on Bitcoin but think there is an opportunity in going long volatility via derivatives strategies.”The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Internet Computer: Correction risk rises after ICP price gains nearly 60% in 5 days

Internet Computer (ICP) has entered 2022 with a bang.The ICP price rose by over 56% in the first five days of the new year, reaching a 30-day high of $38 on Jan. 5. Its massive upside move accompanied a spike in trading volumes, underscoring a strong and healthy bullish sentiment for now.ICP/USD daily price chart. Source: TradingViewAt the center of ICP’s recent price rally was a flurry of optimistic news. That includes Binance’s decision this Tuesday to list a financial instrument that would enable traders to directly swap ICP to/from Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) and the launch of Terabethia, a cross-blockchain bridge, on Dec. 22 that enables Ethereum’s ERC-20 tokens to exist natively on the Internet Computer blockchain.Additionally, a rally across the smart contract platform tokens, especially in the last seven days, may have boosted traders’ appetite for ICP.Smart contract platform tokens’ performance. Source: MessariDowntrend intactNevertheless, ICP remains at risk of paring its recent gains entirely as it trended lower inside its multi-month descending channel range.In detail, the Internet Computer token price reached the channel’s upper trendline on Wednesday, thus exposing itself to selloff risks. That is primarily due to the trendline’s history of limiting ICP’s upside attempts, as shown in the chart below.ICP/USD daily price chart featuring descending channel pattern. Source: TradingViewMeanwhile, recent data also shows that a pullback from the upper trendline pushed the ICP price towards the channel’s lower trendline. For that reason, ICP risked falling to new price lows despite its bullish rebound.Resistance confluenceMore cues for ICP’s pullback setup came from an another resistance near $37.70 and overvaluation risks posed by the token’s daily relative strength index (RSI).The $37.70-level, which helped ICP limit its bearish exposure between September and November 2021, coincides with the 0.236 Fib line of the Fibonacci retracement graph drawn from the circa $89-swing high to the $22-swing low. Meanwhile, the RSI reading at press time came out to be near 67.50. A value above 70 will make ICP an overbought asset that may amount to a certain degree of price correction/consolidation. Should it happen, the ICP price could risk falling to the 0 Fib line near $22.Related: Dfinity insiders alleged to have illegally sold ICP and harmed retail investorsConversely, closing above the $37.70-level could have Internet Computer eye $47.50 as its next upside target.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Top 5 cryptocurrencies to watch in 2022: BTC, ETH, BNB, AVAX, MATIC

Bitcoin (BTC) witnessed a roller coaster ride in 2021 and even though BTC has corrected sharply from its all-time high at $69,000, the digital asset is still up by 60% year-to-date. During the same period, gold has dropped more than 5%. With inflation soaring in the United States and several other parts of the world, Bitcoin’s outperformance over gold shows that investors may be considering it to be a better hedge against inflation when compared to gold.During the year, the total crypto market capitalization surged to about $3 trillion, but Bitcoin’s dominance fell from about 70% at the start of the year to 40%. This shows that several altcoins have outperformed Bitcoin by a huge margin.Crypto market data daily view. Source: Coin360As cryptocurrencies gain wider adoption, multiple altcoins are likely to capture investors’ attention. These could produce strong returns for investors over the next year. Technical analysis has been used to arrive at the current list of large-cap cryptocurrencies that could remain in focus in 2022 and benefit from a crypto bull run. Let’s study the charts of the top five cryptocurrencies to calculate their possible target objectives and the support levels to watch out for in 2022.BTC/USDTBitcoin (BTC) broke and closed above the overhead resistance at $64,854 in early November but the long wick on the candlestick shows profit-booking at higher levels. The selling continued in the following week and the price pulled back below $64,854.BTC/USDT weekly chart. Source: TradingViewThe bulls attempted to defend the 20-week exponential moving average (EMA) ($51,999) but could not sustain the rebound. This intensified the selling and pulled the price below the 50-week simple moving average (SMA) ($47,681).The bulls purchased the dip but failed to extend the recovery above the 20-week EMA. This indicates a possible change in sentiment from buy on dips to sell on rallies. The bears are once again attempting to pull and sustain the price below the 50-week SMA.If they succeed, the BTC/USDT pair could drop to the strong support at $39,600. The 20-week EMA has started to turn down and the relative strength index (RSI) has slipped below 50, indicating that bears have the upper hand. A break and close below $39,600 could result in a deeper correction to $28,805. Such a sharp fall may delay the start of the next leg of the uptrend.On the other hand, if bulls successfully defend the 100-week SMA, the pair will make one more attempt to rise above the 20-week EMA. If that happens, the pair will attempt a rally to the overhead zone at $64,854 to $69,000.A break and close above this zone could start the next leg of the uptrend that could push the pair to the psychologically critical level at $100,000.ETH/USDTEther (ETH) is correcting in a strong uptrend. Both moving averages are sloping up and the RSI is in the positive territory, indicating that bulls have the upper hand.ETH/USDT weekly chart. Source: TradingViewAlthough bears have been attempting to pull the price below the 20-week EMA ($3,745), the long tail on the candlesticks of the past few weeks shows that bulls are buying aggressively at lower levels.The bulls will now make one more attempt to clear the overhead hurdle at the psychologically critical level at $5,000. If they succeed, the ETH/USDT pair could start the next leg of the uptrend with the first target at 100% Fibonacci extension level at $5,719.68.If the momentum carries the price above this level, the next target to watch out for is the 138.2% Fibonacci extension level at $6,566.19 and then the 161.8% extension level at $7,089.17.Contrary to this assumption, if the price turns down from the current level or the overhead resistance and breaks below the 20-week EMA, it will signal that traders are selling on rallies. That could open the doors for a possible drop to the strong support at $2,652.This is an important level to watch on the downside because a break below it could pull the pair to $1,700.BNB/USDTBinance Coin (BNB) turned down from $669.30, indicating that bears are aggressively defending the all-time high at $691.80. However, a minor positive is that bulls are buying the dips to the 20-week EMA ($500).BNB/USDT weekly chart. Source: TradingViewThe upsloping moving averages and the RSI is in the positive zone indicate that buyers have the upper hand.If the price rebounds off the current level, the BNB/USDT pair could rise to the overhead zone at $669.30 to $691.80. The bulls will have to clear this barrier to signal the resumption of the uptrend.If that happens, the pair could start the next leg of the up-move to $848.30 and thereafter attempt a rally to $1,171.90.Another possibility is that the price bounces off the 20-week EMA but turns back from the overhead resistance. In such a case, the pair may remain range-bound for a few weeks.A consolidation near the all-time high is a positive sign as it shows that traders are not rushing to the exit. That increases the prospects of the continuation of the up-move.Conversely, if bears sink and sustain the price below the 20-week EMA, it will indicate that supply exceeds demand. That could result in a decline to the 50-week SMA ($379). A break and close below this level could invalidate the bullish assumption.Related: Nexo co-founder targets Bitcoin at $100K by mid-2022AVAX/USDTAvalanche’s (AVAX) sharp rally to the all-time high at $147 had pushed the RSI near the 85 level, indicating that the up-move was overextended in the short term. This may have resulted in profit-booking by short-term traders.AVAX/USDT weekly chart. Source: TradingViewThe bears pulled the price below $81 for three consecutive weeks but they could not sustain the lower levels as seen from the long tail on the candlesticks. This indicates that bulls have flipped the previous resistance at $81 into support.The strong rebound off the 20-EMA ($73) indicates that sentiment remains bullish and traders are buying on dips. The bulls will now attempt to push the price to the all-time high at $147. A break and close above this resistance could start the next leg of the uptrend. The AVAX/USDT pair could then rise to $213.17 and if the momentum sustains, the rally could even extend to $260.This bullish view will invalidate if the price turns down from the current level or the overhead resistance and breaks below $75.50. Such a move will indicate that the sentiment has turned negative and traders are selling on rallies.The pair could then drop to the strong support at $50. Such a deep fall is likely to delay the start of the next leg of the up-move.MATIC/USDTPolygon’s MATIC has been in an uptrend. The bulls attempted to push the price above the all-time high at $2.70 but failed. This suggests that bears are defending the overhead resistance aggressively. MATIC/USDT weekly chart. Source: TradingViewHowever, a positive sign is that bulls are buying the dips to the 20-week EMA ($1.62). This indicates that sentiment remains bullish and traders are accumulating on dips. The rising moving averages and the RSI near the overbought zone indicate that the path of least resistance is to the upside. The bulls will make one more attempt to push the MATIC/USDT pair above $2.70.If they manage to do that, the pair could start the next leg of the uptrend which could reach $3.28. A break and close above this level could extend the rally to $4 and eventually to $4.77.Contrary to this assumption, if the price turns down from the current level or the overhead resistance and plummets below the 20-week EMA, it will suggest that supply exceeds demand.If the price sustains below the 20-week EMA, the selling could pick up momentum and the pair could plummet to the 50-week SMA ($1.04).The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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3 reasons why Ethereum can reach $5,000 in Q1

Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) has plunged by more than 20% after establishing its record high at around $4,867 on Nov. 10, 2021. Nonetheless, the sharp price pullback does not mean ETH can’t pursue a new record high in the next few months, as several widely-tracked technical, macroeconomic and on-chain indicators suggest. One of these indicators envisions Ether’s price reaching $5,000 in the first quarter of 2022 while others look are poised to support the bullish bias.ETH price painting falling wedgeEther’s recent price correction is painting a potential classic bullish reversal pattern known as “falling wedge.”In detail, falling wedges begin wide at the top but contract as the price moves lower. As a result, the price action forms a conical shape that trends lower as the reaction highs and reaction lows converge. Traders realize a bullish bias only after the price decisively breaks above the wedge’s resistance.As a result, expectations remain high that the ETH price would break above its falling wedge resistance in the coming sessions. In doing so, it would rise by as much as the maximum distance between the wedge’s upper and lower trendline when measured from the breakout point. Literally unchanged…$ETH is going to $5k pic.twitter.com/11mAQiJxJS— Kong Trading (@KongBTC) January 4, 2022That roughly puts the price target for Ether at $5,000.ETH deposits to exchanges dropTraders typically move their tokens to exchanges when they intend to sell/trade them for either fiat, stablecoins or other cryptocurrencies. Generally, a higher number of transactions made to crypto trading platforms reflects a high selling sentiment in the market. Conversely, if the token transactions plunge, they show a strong holding sentiment in the market.Data collected by blockchain analytics service Glassnode show that the number of on-chain Ether deposits to exchanges dropped to its 23-month low on Jan. 3.ETH number of exchange deposits. Source: GlassnodeAdditionally, another Glassnode metric that tracks the number of Ether addresses sending ETH to exchanges also reported declines over the last 30 days, the same period that saw the ETH/USD rate dropping nearly 11%.Ethereum number of addresses sending to exchanges. Source: GlassnodeMeanwhile, the total Ether balance across all the exchanges has been in a downtrend since Aug. 2020, suggesting that ETH investors are in it for the long haul as its price rose from nearly $400 to a little over $3,800 in the same period.Ethereum balance on exchanges. Source: GlassnodeCheap money here to stay? Ether’s $1,000-plus plunge from Nov. 2021 to date came majorly in the wake of the Federal Reserve’s hawkish turn.The U.S. central bank decided to accelerate the unwinding of its $120 billion a month asset purchase program, followed by three rate hikes in 2022 from its near-zero levels, to stem rising inflation. Its loose monetary policy was one of the primary catalysts behind similar price rallies across Ethereum, Bitcoin (BTC) and other crypto markets.ETH/USD and BTC/USD weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewBut the Fed’s efforts to tame inflation from its current 6.8% level with three rate hikes may not impact Bitcoin and Ethereum prices in the long run. For example, Antoni Trenchev, managing partner of crypto lender Nexo believes that cheap money is here to stay. “The No. 1 influencing factor for Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in 2022 is central bank policy,” he told Bloomberg. He added:“Cheap money is here to stay, which has huge implications for crypto. The Fed doesn’t have the stomach or backbone to withstand a 10%–20% collapse in the stock market, along with an adverse reaction in the bond market.”Hungarian-born billionaire Thomas Peterffy also said that investors should allocate at least 2%–3% of their net portfolio to cryptocurrencies like BTC and ETH in case the fiat money “goes to hell.” Related: More billionaires turning to crypto on fiat inflation fearsAdditionally, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio revealed that he has been holding BTC and ETH in his portfolio against the risks of cash devaluation led by higher inflation.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Ethereum whales dumping ETH as price slides below $4K, data shows

Ethereum is having difficulty keeping its richest investors in line as its native token, Ether (ETH), hints at logging more losses in the near term.Blockchain data analytics service Glassnode revealed that the number of Ethereum addresses holding at least 1,000 ETH dropped to 6,292 this Monday, the lowest reading since April 2017. At its year-to-date peak, the numbers were 7,239 in January.Number of Ethereum addresses with balance of at least 1,000 ETH. Source: GlassnodeOn-chain analysts typically observe ETH distributions among addresses to realize retail and institutional sentiments. They consider wallets that hold above 1,000 ETH (around $3.92 million at currency exchange rates) as “whales,” primarily for their ability to influence interim market trends via large sell and/or buy orders.But as the numbers of these so-called whales drop, it reflects an ongoing selling trend among the richest Ethereum wallet owners. For instance, the number of Ethereum addresses that hold at least 10,000 ETH (or around $39.20 million) has also plunged, from 1,208 in June to 1,156 at the time of this writing, marking an almost 4.5% decline.Number of Ethereum addresses with a balance of at least 10,000 ETH. Source: GlassnodeBut, on a year-to-date timeframe, the numbers have gone up from 1,065 to 1,156, just as the cost to purchase 1 ETH, in the same period, has jumped nearly 450%. Small investors are accumulatingUnlike whales, wallets that hold ETH in small quantities have been at the forefront of Ether’s 2021 price rally.For example, Glassnode’s data shows that the number of Ethereum addresses with a non-zero ETH balance reached an all-time high of over 71.23 million on Monday. That included wallets with at least 0.01 ETH (~$40), whose numbers shot up to 20.31 million versus 10.66 million at the beginning of this year.Meanwhile, addresses that hold at least 0.1 ETH (~$400) jumped to 6.44 million this Monday compared to 3.62 million on Jan. 1, 2021. That is almost a twofold rise, signaling a higher retail interest in the world’s second-largest cryptocurrency.Number of Ethereum addresses with a balance of at least 0.1 ETH. Source: GlassnodeETH eyes bullish reversalThe latest decline in Ether whales appeared as Ether struggled to close decisively above $4,000, its psychological resistance level. On Tuesday, ETH/USD dropped by over 3.27% to an intraday low of $3,880. Its drop came as a part of a wider correction that started after Ether tested a downward sloping trendline as resistance on Dec. 23. The chart below shows that the trendline is a part of a descending channel that appears like a “falling wedge.”ETH/USD daily price chart featuring falling wedge. Source: TradingViewIn detail, falling wedges are technically bullish reversal patterns that appear after the price trends lower inside a trading range featuring two converging trendlines. The instrument eventually breaks above the structure’s upper trendline ahead or after reaching the apex (where two trendlines converge).The profit target in a rising wedge scenario is generally obtained after adding the maximum distance between the structure’s upper and lower trendline to the breakout point. That puts ETH’s price en route to the $4,200–5,000 range, depending on its breakout level.ETH/USD daily price chart featuring falling wedge targets. Source: TradingViewNevertheless, Ether’s price still has enough room to decline, toward $3,200 in the worst-case scenario. The level is where wedge’s trendlines converge.Related: 3 reasons why Ethereum price can drop below $3K by the end of 2021Meanwhile, independent market analyst Pentoshi said that nothing concrete can be predicted for Ether now as it remains stuck between a “bear contested” and a “bull contested” area, as shown in the chart below.ETH/USD three-day price chart. Source: TradingView, Pentoshi“Maybe it’s the bottom. Don’t care,” tweeted Pentoshi on Tuesday. “I don’t like when them market gives this many times to buy an area with important historical context like this Would rather pay for confirmation.”The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Retailers to drive crypto payments adoption: Survey

Crypto payments might be the innovation companies are looking for. A recent survey by payment network Mercuryo revealed that 57% of respondents believe accepting cryptocurrency payments would give companies a competitive edge. Among the other standout statistics, more than a third of businesses reported that customers had asked to pay in Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH) or another digital currency.Hot on the heels of news that Dogecoin (DOGE) will trial for Tesla merchandise payments and WhatsApp began testing payments with Meta’s Novi wallet, the Mercuryo report highlights that retail payment services will continue to be a key crypto adoption driver.The report surveyed 501 senior financial decision makers in the United Kingdom. Almost half of the sample size consisted of large businesses employing over 250 people. Of the respondents, 40% are of board or director level management, while the rest are partners or business owners. Crucially, however, large companies may increasingly lead the way. Of the findings, Petr Kozyokov, the CEO and co-founder of Mercuryo, told Cointelegraph:“Our research highlights that 75% of all large companies believe cryptocurrency will eventually be integrated into every form of financial services.”He added that 72% of large businesses within the payments sector consider cryptocurrency to be the future of payments. Over 75% saw increased demand from customers and suppliers to offer cryptocurrency as a payment option.Related: New study reveals high demand for payments in cryptocurrencyIn a series of interviews in The Times, smaller businesses such as e-bike retailers, shoe brands and fintech startups have expressed their conviction for cryptocurrencies as an asset for companies. While Bitcoin and cryptocurrency payments make up a small percentage of their total sales, they say it’s a growing and valued service.Companies like Bitpay, Coinbase and Block are on hand to facilitate businesses’ transition into accepting cryptocurrency payments. Still, it’s not as easy as being paid your salary in crypto –a fast-growing trend and a magnet for attracting top talent in 2021.According to Kozyokov, “building these complex cryptocurrency infrastructures in-house often takes, in some cases, years to complete.” As is the case with new technologies, “there are still barriers to implementation which are slowing down the pace of adoption.”The report indicates that a lack of clear regulatory clarity within the market was cited by 33% of respondents as a barrier to entry, whereas 27% stated the vulnerability to scams is concerning, and 28% are worried about exchange rate fluctuations.While the cryptocurrency market cap has proven its worth, sitting above a $2 trillion market cap for most of 2021, it’s clear that educating traditional retailers about their use case as a payments technology will still take some time. However, as the industry has proven time and time again, Kozyokov concludes, “it will be the early movers who will reap the rewards.”

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Avalanche eyes 60% rally as AVAX price breaks out of bull flag

Avalanche (AVAX) strengthened its case for a potential upside run towards $160 in the coming sessions as it broke out of a classic bullish pattern earlier this week.Dubbed “bull flag,” the pattern emerges when the price consolidates lower/sideways between two parallel trendlines (flag) after undergoing a strong upside move (flagpole). Later, in theory, the price breaks out of the channel range to continue the uptrend and tends to rise by as much as the flagpole’s height.AVAX went through a similar price trajectory across the last 30 days, containing a roughly 100% flagpole rally to nearly $150, followed by over a 50% flag correction to $72, and a breakout move above the flag’s upper trendline (around $85) on Dec. 15.AVAX/USD daily price chart featuring Bull Flag pattern. Source: TradingViewAVAX price continued rallying after breaking out of its bull flag range, reaching almost $120 on Friday but eyeing a further leg up towards its bullish continuation target near $160. The level appeared after adding the height of AVAX’s flagpole, which is around $75, to the current breakout point near $85.A week full of bullish AVAX eventsThe recent buying period in the Avalanche market picked momentum also because of a flurry of positive catalysts this week.AVAX jumped nearly 10.50% on Tuesday as Avalanche added the native version of USDC, a dollar-pegged stablecoin issued by Circle, on its blockchain. Additionally, a report penned by Bank of America analysts published on Dec. 10, called Avalanche a viable alternative to the leading smart contract platform Ethereum. That coincided with AVAX gaining another 16%.AVAX/USD daily price chart featuring key events in the week ending Dec. 19. Source: TradingViewOn Thursday, AVAX rallied to its two-week high after BitGo, a crypto custodian with over $64 billion worth of assets under management, announced that it would support the token. Nonetheless, a modest selloff at the local price top pushed AVAX lower. Th recover Friday as Avalanche announced that it has collaborated with web3 accelerator DeFi Alliance to launch a gaming accelerator program.1/ Avalanche is collaborating with @DeFiAlliance to bring its accelerator programs to the Avalanche communityApply by Jan 7 here: https://t.co/6HcJOLxKxABefore you apply, check these reasons why Avalanche should be your preferred platform: pic.twitter.com/GhdHBhQNgb— Avalanche (@avalancheavax) December 17, 2021All the events mentioned above pointed towards the Avalanche ecosystem’s growth. For instance, with USDC, the project promised to provide a viable alternative to Ethereum’s highly expensive Tether (USDT) stablecoin transactions. Moreover, by gaining BitGo as AVAX’s institutional custodian, Avalanche appears to be prepping for catering to accredited investors. Mike Belshe, CEO of BitGo, explained:“Institutional custody is not the same as retail custody, and BitGo wallets and custody were designed from the ground up to meet the needs of institutional investors, and BitGo is the only independent qualified custodian focused on building the right market structure and facilities to enable institutions to enter the digital asset space with confidence.”AVAX price risksOne of the remaining downside risks around AVAX concerns the crypto market performance, on the whole.In detail, AVAC rallied in a week that witnessed the entire cryptocurrency market capitalization lose more than $114 billion, with leading crypto assets Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) plunging over 7% and 5% week-to-date. Concerns over the Federal Reserve’s tapering plans catalyzed the market selloff.Therefore, it appears that traders looked at AVAX as their short-term hedge against the crypto market drop, largely driven by a string of positive news. AVAX/BTC weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewMoreover, the AVAX/BTC pair was up nearly 40% week-to-date at around 0.00245 BTC at the time of writing, with the pair’s relative strength index (RSI) entering overbought territory. That could prompt AVAX to weaken against BTC in the coming sessions.Related: ‘Monster bull move’ means whales could secure the next Bitcoin price surgeA similar outcome may be possible in AVAX/USD’s case as its weekly RSI treads near overbought levels.AVAX/USD weekly price chart. Source: TradingViewHowever, the pair is likely to retain its bullish bias as long as it holds above its 20-week exponential moving average (20-week EMA) as support. As shown in the chart above, the green wave has been capping AVAX’s downside attempts since August 2020.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Small Ethereum investors increase exposure as ETH loses $4K level

Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) has dropped by over 18% after establishing an all-time high around $4,867 on Nov. 10, now trading near $3,900. Nonetheless, the plunge has not deterred retail investors from buying the token in small quantities.According to data gathered by Glassnode — a blockchain analytics platform, the number of Ether addresses holding less than or equal to 0.01 ETH reached a record high level of 19.95 million on Dec. 4, the day ETH dropped to as low as $3,575 (data from Coinbase).Ethereum addresses with balances less than or equal to 0.01. Source: GlassnodeMeanwhile, the number of Ethereum wallets with balances of at least 0.1 ETH also kept climbing despite Ether’s correction from $4,867 to $3,575, eventually hitting a new all-time high of 6.37 million on Dec. 12. As a result, the number of Ether addresses with a non-zero balance also reached a new record high of nearly 70 million on Dec. 12. In contrast, addresses holding less than or equal to 1 ETH dropped alongside prices, indicating that they were less interested in buying Ether’s sessional dips.  Ethereum addresses with balances less than or equal to 1 ETH. Source: GlassnodeBounce ahead?The army of retail investors buying Ether in small quantities marches ahead as the ETH price drops toward a support confluence.Notably, Ether plunged Monday by over 5% to near $3,900 in a selloff inspired by similar corrections across the cryptocurrency space. Nonetheless, ETH price reached an area that has been lately attracting buyers.ETH/USD daily price chart featuring Support Confluence. Source: TradingViewThe first support came from the lower trendline of the descending channel pattern — the blacked range shown in the chart above. Meanwhile, the purpled 100-day simple moving average (100-day SMA) and the red pullback area — as it has been since Oct. 20 — raised Ether’s potential to retrace upward in the near term.While smaller retail investors seem to have been accumulating Ether, their larger counterparts look conflicted.Ethereum addresses with balances less than or equal to 1,000 ETH. Source: GlassnodeFor instance, Glassnode data shows a marginal recovery in the buying interest by the Ethereum wallets with balances of at least 1,000 ETH. Still, overall, their numbers have gone down from near 7,200 to below 6,350 in 2021.Exchanges’ Ether balancesMore upside cues come from Ether’s declining balances across all the crypto exchanges. The number of coins held by exchanges recovered from nearly 14 million ETH to 14.13 million ETH since Dec. 9 — which coincided with an almost 10.50% price drop — but its long-term trend remains skewed to the downside.Ethereum balance on all exchanges versus ETH price. Source: GlassnodeA lower ETH balance across exchanges hints at traders’ intention to hold their coins or stake them in the pools of decentralized finance (DeFi) projects to earn yields instead of trading them for other assets.Related: Data shows pro traders are currently more bullish on Ethereum than BitcoinDeFi’s total value locked (TVL) sits at a new all-time high above $250 billion, according to data provided by Defi Llama, out of which Ethereum’s TVL came out to be over $180 billion.Total capital locked across the Ethereum ecosystem. Source: Defi Llama”However, Ethereum’s dominance over DeFi activity has taken a big hit in H2 2021,” reminded Delphi Digital, a crypto-focused investment firm, adding that: “As the multi-chain narrative plays out, capital has moved to ecosystems like Solana, Terra and Avalanche.”High gas fees have been the main reason behind investors seeking potential “Ethereum killers.”For instance, a decentralized exchange swap costs $70 on Ethereum but $1 on Terra and Solana, although some analysts anticipate that Ethereum’s full transition from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake next year would solve the high gas problem.”Ethereum’s price will rise at a much faster rate than Bitcoin, due to the move to proof-of-stake,” noted Tom Higgins, CEO at asset management platform Gold-i.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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3 reasons why Ethereum price can drop below $3K by the end of 2021

Ethereum’s native token Ether (ETH) reached an all-time high around $4,867 earlier in November, only to plunge by nearly 20% a month later on rising profit-taking sentiment. And now, as the ETH price holds $4,000 as a key support level, risks of further selloffs are emerging in the form of multiple technical and fundamental indicators.ETH price rising wedgeFirst, Ether appears to have been breaking out of “rising wedge,” a bearish reversal pattern that emerges when the price trends upward inside a range defined by two ascending — but converging — trendlines.Simply put, as the Ether price nears the Wedge’s apex point, it risks breaking below the pattern’s lower trendline, a move that many technical chartists see as a cue for more losses ahead. In doing so, their profit target appears at a length equal to the maximum wedge height when measured from the breakout point.ETH/USD weekly price chart featuring Rising Wedge. Source: TradingViewAs a result, Ether’s rising wedge downside target comes out to be near $2,800, also near its 50-week exponential moving average (50-week EMA). Bearish divergenceThe bearish outlook in the Ether market appears despite its ability to bear the massive selling pressures felt elsewhere in the cryptocurrency market in recent weeks.For instance, Bitcoin (BTC), the leading crypto by market cap, fell by 30% almost a month after establishing its record high of $69,000 in early November, much higher than Ether’s decline in the same period. That prompted many analysts to call Ether a “hedge” against the Bitcoin price decline — also as ETH/BTC rallied to its best levels in more than three years.But it does not take away the fact that Ether’s recent price rally has coincided with a decline in its weekly relative strength index (RSI), signaling a growing divergence between price and momentum.ETH/USD weekly price chart featuring divergence between price and RSI. Source: TradingViewAdditionally, the recent ETH price pullback also had the RSI oscillator fall below 70, a classic sell indicator.Fed “dot plot”More downside cues for Ether come ahead of the Federal Reserve two-day policy meeting starting on Dec, 14 when the U.S. central bank will discuss how quickly it may need to taper its $120 billion a month asset purchasing program to gain enough flexibility for potential rate hikes next year.Just last month, the Fed announced that it would scale back its bond-buying at the pace of $15 billion per month, suggesting that the stimulus would eventually cease by June 2022. Nonetheless, a string of recent market reports showing a tightening jobs market and persistently mounting inflationary pressures prompted the Fed officials to end tapering “perhaps a few months sooner.”20 CenBanks hold meetings next week as inflation keeps rising w/final decisions for 2021 due at Fed, ECB, BoJ, BoE which together responsible for half of world econ. CenBank balance sheets have risen in lockstep to ATHs, but now there could be divergence. https://t.co/GgOLGCNbjR pic.twitter.com/mrrhwUVcet— Holger Zschaepitz (@Schuldensuehner) December 12, 2021Market anticipations also adjusted, with a Financial Times survey of 48 economists anticipating the stimulus to end by March 2022 and most respondents favoring a rate hike in the second quarter.The period of loose monetary policies after March 2020 has been instrumental in pushing the ETH price high by over 3,330%. Therefore, the increasing likelihood of tapering can certainly put the brakes on the current rally, if not the bull market as a whole, according to some ana.From there I expect a very aggressive approach from the Fed because they’ll recognize we are in a bubble and something extreme needs to be done.Then we get our multi-year bear market.— K A L E O (@CryptoKaleo) December 10, 2021

Markets anticipate the Fed will update its policy statement and summary of economic projections (SEP) this week. In doing so, more central bank officials would adjust the “dot plot” to favor an earlier-than-anticipated rate hike against rising inflation.The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph.com. Every investment and trading move involves risk, you should conduct your own research when making a decision.

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Three Arrows buys 156K ETH in the weeks after CEO 'abandoned ETH'

Crypto hedge fund Three Arrows Capital (3AC) has bought more than half a billion dollars worth of Ether in the time since CEO Zhu Su publicly slammed the cryptocurrency on Twitter. Do the purchases mean he’s changed his mind, or was he just taking advantage of a market crash to buy the dip?In an anti-ETH tirade between Nov. 20 and Nov. 22, Zhu tweeted about why he had “abandoned Ethereum despite supporting it in the past.” The thread came in response to a tweet from Synthetix founder Kain Warwick, who’d called out people who have “sold out in pursuit of profit maximization.” During the tweet storm Zhu claimed that Ethereum culture “suffers massively from the Founders’ Dilemma” and that “everyone is already far too rich to remember what they originally set out to do.”However, after attracting wide attention, he made a U-turn saying he wanted to “soften” his original stance and that “I love Ethereum and what it stands for.”In the 17 days or so since the threads, approximately 156,400 thousand Ether (ETH) or $676.37 million has been transferred to a wallet that blockchain analytics firm Nansen has associated with 3AC. Almost all the funds entering the wallet during this period were transferred from Binance, FTX exchange or Coinbase. Look I couldn’t let you guys jerk off watching the burn without meEth L1 still unusable for newcomers, show it to your grandma if you don’t believe meI’ll still bid it hard on any panic dump like this weekend obv100k eth is dust fwiw, more coming— Zhu Su (@zhusu) December 7, 2021Zhu confirmed the transactions earlier today in response to a tweet from Chinese blogger Wu Blockchain, saying that although Ethereum layer-one is still “unusable for newcomers,” he’d still “bid hard on any panic dump like this weekend.”The wallet shows 3AC made the majority of its purchases during the weekend price crash. When the anti-ETH tweets emerged, many Twitter users believed he was trying to pump rival project Avalanche (AVAX), which 3AC has invested in. In response to a user asking if the ETH purchases meant he’d dumped his AVAX holdings for ETH, he said that he has “never sold AVAX” and simply “bought this ETH from whoever was financially illiterate enough to sell this weekend.” In early November, Three Arrows Capital was announced as an investor in Blizzard, a fund to promote the development of AVAX. Following Zhu’s initial tweets, AVAX pushed out Dogecoin (DOGE) from its spot as the 10th-largest crypto by market capitalization. Zhu tweeted a graph of AVAX’s growth captioned “top 10” in the hours before his U-turn.Yes I have abandoned Ethereum despite supporting it in the past.Yes Ethereum has abandoned its users despite supporting them in the past.The idea of sitting around jerking off watching the burn and concocting purity tests, while zero newcomers can afford the chain, is gross.— Zhu Su (@zhusu) November 21, 2021

Related: Three Arrows Capital executives launch NFT fundAt 23:34 UTC today, 93,791.894 Ether was moved from the wallet belonging to 3AC to an address that appears to belong to a major trader. Smaller amounts have been moved to other addresses, including 500 Ether moved to an apparent NFT investment wallet shortly.

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