Ethereum reaches 20-month high amid rising investor optimism

Ethereum (ETH) has been steadily increasing since mid-Oct. and recently broke the $2,200 mark for the first time since the Terra collapse in May of last year.

ETH is up by 3.8% in the past 24 hours and is trading at around $2,250 at the time of writing — reaching a 20-month-high. The asset’s market cap rose to $270 billion with a market dominance of 17.3%. 

Ethereum reaches 20-month high amid rising investor optimism - 1
ETH price, whale activity and total open interest – Dec. 4 | Source: Santiment

Ethereum’s 24-hour trading volume also registered a 15% hike, surpassing the $11 billion mark. 

According to data provided by the market intelligence platform Santiment, the number of wallets holding between 0.1 and 1 ETH reached a 14-week high of 3.35 million, a level last seen in mid-August. 

On the other hand, the number of whale wallets consisting of between 100 and 1,000 ETH, per Santiment, has been constantly declining since early March — currently standing at 40,779 unique addresses. 

Moreover, Santiment data shows that ETH’s total open interest (OI) has been constantly rising since Nov. 26. ETH’s total OI rose from $4.4 billion on Dec. 3 to $4.43 billion at the time of writing, per the market intelligence platform. 

Ethereum’s whale activity surged as the price hike came. According to Santiment’s data, the number of whale transactions consisting of at least $100,000 worth of ETH rose by 4.3% over the past 24 hours — rising from 3,343 trades on Dec. 3 to 3,484 unique transactions at the reporting time.

The bullish momentum in ETH comes as the asset’s supply turned deflationary amid a decrease in validator participation. According to a report, the number of Ethereum validators exiting the network has been declining, causing a slow token issuance rate. 

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin previously pointed out the network’s staking and decentralization problems. Buterin stated that the issues making the Ethereum blockchain look centralized will be addressed in the forthcoming Dencun upgrade.

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